Javalina Friendly Cave Gate

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Javalina Friendly Cave Gate

Postby Tom Gilleland » Jan 15, 2007 2:27 am

Does anyone have any information on making a cave gate Javalina friendly? Has anyone built one?

Equal access for all the cave critters... except for that one large mammal who sells stuff on ebay! ;)
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Postby caverdoc » Jan 15, 2007 10:40 am

except for that one large mammal who sells stuff on ebay! ;)


Hey, you talking about me? :shock: Oh, wait, I only BUY stuff on ebay....
and certainly not cave formations.

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Postby caverdoc » Jan 15, 2007 9:40 pm

On a serious note, I think that if you have bar spacing about six inches at ground level you will keep out a lot of "spelunkers." (Cavers will be able to get the key...) Granted, there are some pretty skinny yahoos who might be able to squeeze past this gate, so you could limit the height to 11" which will allow a javelina/peccary to knee-walk in. I hope.

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Re: Javalina Friendly Cave Gate

Postby NZcaver » Jan 16, 2007 12:26 am

Tom Gilleland wrote:Does anyone have any information on making a cave gate Javalina friendly? Has anyone built one?

Do animal-friendly gates exist for larger animals like the Javalina? Even if you came up with that "perfect" size where most Javalina will fit but most humans won't - who's to say the Javalina will still want to enter the cave when it's gated? :?

After the experience of meeting Javelina underground, I'm of the opinion that humans should not share the same enclosed space with them - or their droppings. Oh, the stench! :eyecrazy:
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Postby tropicalbats » Jan 17, 2007 2:08 am

I've never heard of such a gate, but it seems doable. I'd go with a series of roughly lollipop-shaped opening along the bottom. The feet could go through the skinny bit, and the body through the top, and the diameter could be kept below what people can fit through. It'd be an interesting gating project, and yes, even if the holes were big enough, the critters might not use it. You'd have to build one to find out.

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Postby Anonymous_Coward » Jan 17, 2007 11:05 am

I've seen some javalina that were bigger around than small cavers.

Tom, maybe you could put the gate further into the cave than javalina are willing to go. Can you tell us which cave you are gating?
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Postby cmyoung » Jun 4, 2007 8:30 pm

Tom,
I seem to remember that during your porcine encounter the javelina in question was moving at quite a good clip. How about making the gate velocity dependent? What properties of javelinaness besides diameter can we use as a filter? maybe we could make an odor sensitive mechanism. Video image recognition? Are there some 'moves' that they can (or are willing to) make that humans can't?

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Postby tncaver » Jun 5, 2007 9:22 am

jaa45993 said: "Tom, maybe you could put the gate further into the cave than javalina are willing to go."

Now that is a great idea! Not only would it allow javalina and other larger animals into the dark zone of the cave but would also maintain the natural look
of the entrance from the outside.
Too bad the so called conservation groups in the US
haven't been doing that all along. I'm sure the conservation groups would find much less resistance
to their cave gates if they were not seen from the outside. There is also that old saying that applies here...out of site out of mind.
Putting cave gates much further into a cave would
eliminate two of the major objections brought up
by anti cave gaters. Those being the ugly look of
gates on caves (not natural) and the keeping out of
other large natural animals that also use caves. Also
not natural. That only leaves the third major objection which is lack of caver access for various
reasons to include recreation in the bat off season.
It is amazing that such a simple suggestion could have solved so many of the protests that the
so called conservation groups now must put up with.
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Postby cob » Jun 5, 2007 7:13 pm

tncaver wrote:jaa45993 said: "Tom, maybe you could put the gate further into the cave than javalina are willing to go."

Now that is a great idea! Not only would it allow javalina and other larger animals into the dark zone of the cave but would also maintain the natural look
of the entrance from the outside.


At least in some cases... NOT such a good idea. Like in the case of two Ozarkistan caves that were being frequented by ATVr's. If the idea is to keep out the noise and exhaust, one has no choice.

But speaking as one who hates cave gates (but acknowledges the sometime neccessity of them) I have to ask about a point of discrimination I see here:

Why is it OK for a javelina to go into a cave, s**t and p**s all over the place, dig up the floor (it's called "rooting" when done outside) and possibly break formations? Is it because they are cute and furry? Or are they just more "natural"?

Hey... I'm kinda cute (well my girlfriend thinks so anyway) and I do have some fur (on my face and other places as well), sometimes I have to s**t or p**s too, (tho I promise I will try to take it outside) and any "rooting" I do will be indistinguishable from the pigs (I only want to see a few artifacts)(which tend to be close to the entrance) and any formations I break, I promise I won't sell on e-bay. Besides... I'm "natural" (curly) too.

How's about making your gates COB freindly too?

I mean, what's the diff?
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Postby tncaver » Jun 6, 2007 7:01 am

cob wrote:"Why is it OK for a javelina to go into a cave, s**t and p**s all over the place, dig up the floor (it's called "rooting" when done outside) and possibly break formations? Is it because they are cute and furry? Or are they just more "natural"? "

Hey cob, I guess we humans aren't considered natural.
Although I don't see why not. As for the javalina's
doing things in the cave...if there is no evidence that
they were doing damage before a gate was installed
then why would a gate be needed? Maybe instead of gating off a cave, a fence or gate could
simply be put across the access road or around a cave, rather than right across the entrance. That would keep ATV's out and maintain the beauty of
the entrance.
I think there are ways to protect caves without always having to put a gate on the entrance. Seems to me, a gate on an entrance should be a last resort. And a last
resort won't be realized until other methods are tried
first. I've not heard of other methods being tried first
on the vast majority of gatings.
One particular conservation group prides themselves
on keeping everyone out of their caves and off the
lands they acquire. It amazes me that they get so
many donations. I just can't see donating money to
groups that buy up wonderful places and won't let
anyone see those places....except for scientists.
I for one don't like cave gates but acknowledge that
in some rare cases they are needed. In my humble
opinion there are way more cave gates than there are
caves that need them.
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Postby cob » Jun 6, 2007 8:56 pm

tncaver wrote:Hey cob, I guess we humans aren't considered natural.


Yeah, I know. I just had to say something after listening to a buddy of mine talk about the "human coprolites" in Mammoth... and what a kick cavers get out of them.

As for the javalina's doing things in the cave...if there is no evidence that they were doing damage before a gate was installed
then why would a gate be needed?


And here comes the rub... What is damage? For some cavers, when an "animal" does it, it is "natural"... but when a human does it, it is "vandalism". I just sense a double standard.

Maybe instead of gating off a cave, a fence or gate could
simply be put across the access road or around a cave, rather than right across the entrance. That would keep ATV's out and maintain the beauty of the entrance.


I hate to say it but, that would not even slow the ATVer's around here down. Some of these people would think nothing at all of riding right thru your living room, if they would not get shot for it.

I think there are ways to protect caves without always having to put a gate on the entrance. Seems to me, a gate on an entrance should be a last resort. And a last resort won't be realized until other methods are tried first. I've not heard of other methods being tried first
on the vast majority of gatings.


In my experience, it is because things have already reached a breaking point.

One particular conservation group prides themselves
on keeping everyone out of their caves and off the lands they acquire. It amazes me that they get so many donations. I just can't see donating money to groups that buy up wonderful places and won't let
anyone see those places


I know the type, and I don't get it. For whom are we saving it? Yeah I know, the "bats", (simmer down folks, my point becomes clear soon) but how do you make people care about "creepy crawly furry ugly bats"? Yeah, WE do, but we are the minority, and the more caves get closed, the smaller minority we become. Who cares when the cavers are gone because there are no caves to go to?

....except for scientists.


who are an even SMALLER minority (that nobody listens to, eg. "global warming")

I for one don't like cave gates but acknowledge that
in some rare cases they are needed.


same here brother...


In my humble opinion there are way more cave gates than there are caves that need them


I agree... but how to tell the difference? And that is where we "dumb cavers" sit.

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Postby NZcaver » Jun 6, 2007 11:15 pm

tncaver wrote:Too bad the so called conservation groups in the US haven't been doing that all along. I'm sure the conservation groups would find much less resistance to their cave gates if they were not seen from the outside. There is also that old saying that applies here...out of site out of mind. Putting cave gates much further into a cave would eliminate two of the major objections brought up by anti cave gaters. Those being the ugly look of gates on caves (not natural) and the keeping out of other large natural animals that also use caves.

I'm not sure if you realize this, but plenty of gated caves around the US actually DO have gates installed inside the cave out of sight from the entrance. A commonly chosen location used to be at the narrowest practical point somewhere near the entrance, because less material would be needed and there is less chance of a non-caver crawling around trying to f... with it. But for the sake of "bat flow" I believe that method is no longer recommended and larger portals are now preferred.

Of course if some idiots were to build a campfire inside the entrance to an internally-gated cave, it could result in the bats being smoked out (or killed) anyway.

As for the Javalina - having shared a tight space with them and their droppings once before (in a mine), I have to agree with Cob here. Would it be all that bad to exclude them from any caves sensitive enough to warrant a gate in the first place? Apologies to the Javalina-rights people, but after all they're just wild pigs which will turn any structure they can get into or under into an opportunistic temporary shelter.
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Postby tncaver » Jun 7, 2007 6:56 am

Yes, NZ, I see your point about the javalinas being
destructive. Basically all pigs tear up the ground, but
usually only where there is food to be rooted up.
In TN it is much more likely for bob cats, coyotes,
skunks, ground hogs, raccoons to use caves. I have
met a raccoon in a cave before and their tracks are
seen frequently. Also coyote scat is common these
days. Wild pigs are not common, but I have come
across a beaver nest in a cave.
Most of the gates in TN are the huge, ugly outside type, although there is one cave managed by the SCCi that has a gate 60 feet inside the cave.
Some caves are being managed by having a fence
around the property or a gate across the road. But
many simply have a conservation sign, a short
explanation of any rules to be followed and a kiosk
to protect paper work from the weather.
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Postby NZcaver » Jun 8, 2007 3:04 am

tncaver wrote:Yes, NZ, I see your point about the javalinas being destructive. Basically all pigs tear up the ground, but usually only where there is food to be rooted up. In TN it is much more likely for bob cats, coyotes, skunks, ground hogs, raccoons to use caves. I have met a raccoon in a cave before and their tracks are seen frequently. Also coyote scat is common these days. Wild pigs are not common, but I have come across a beaver nest in a cave.

Yeah, I think this thread does bring up an interesting point about caves. The whole concept of allowing/restricting access by one means or another can certainly affect more species than just the "obvious creatures" - bats and humans.

Most of the gates in TN are the huge, ugly outside type, although there is one cave managed by the SCCi that has a gate 60 feet inside the cave. Some caves are being managed by having a fence around the property or a gate across the road. But many simply have a conservation sign, a short explanation of any rules to be followed and a kiosk to protect paper work from the weather.

You mean ugly like this one? :shock: (No offense to the artist, authors, or publisher, of course.)

Image

I hope all those caves you keep mentioning in Tennessee don't look like that! I guess that was the best known method back when the book was published in 1981, but I sure hope no-one copies that particular design today. Not having read the rest of the book, I can't really comment any further... but I don't think I'll be adding this one to my collection.
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