August 13, 2007

Wild Life

Normally I am a great lover of nature. I feed the birds and provide them a nice bird bath to frolic around in. I grew up surrounded by squirrels, who annoyed my dad by raiding the bird feeders, but provided entertainment with their acrobatics. I watched tadpoles caught by my brother change into frogs. But I am drawing a line at the pesky groundhog that has taken up residence under our porch.

When we moved into our current home eight years ago, we were the first house to be completed at our end of the block. Our back yard was surrounded by large mounds of dirt and the empty lots across the street were filled covered by mound of dirt too. Every evening around five pm, the groundhogs surfaced and chased each other up and down the dirt piles until they played themselves out. Back then, I thought they were cute. I have since changed my mind!

The groundhog that is living under our porch has been feasting in my vegetable garden (raised beds surrounded by hardware cloth - a wire netting put up to keep the rabbits out) and I am on the verge of wishing I had a BB gun so I could sting its little butt. Besides wiping out the bean patch and munching on the tomatoes and cucumbers, it has turned the ground under the fence surrounding our back yard into Swiss cheese by tunneling to get out of the yard.

So, to preserve my sanity and to protect the vegetables (and my aging pooch) I am looking for ways to rid my yard of this pesky rodent. Where is Carl the assistant groundskeeper from Caddyshack when I need him?


EC Gefroh said...

Would those humane traps work for you? Then you can release the little critter in the woods.

Barb Szyszkiewicz said...

Oh man, we just watched that movie the other day. I have to say, it was a lot funnier when I was in my 20s....want Big Brother to come over there and do something explosive? He's a Boy Scout, so he can put out any fire he starts (wink)

Ellen said...

Esther - I am sure the humane traps would work just fine for me, but I fear that this determined critter would find it's way back.

Barb - Will Big Brother make a squirrel out of explosives for me? Unfortunately, I think it hangs out under our porch, so that method might compromise the house a little.

I guess our quest to de-groundhog the yard will begin at Agway where the we will be asked if we want the coyote urine (their natural enemy) to sprinkle around the perimeter of the property or the DRT method (Dead Right There). At least these were the two options they offered my neighbor a few years ago.

At this point, I'm afraid DRT is the option of choice (sorry Esther). But first my husband must figure out a way to deter not only the groundhog, but the rabbits from coming in under the fence - there's no point in getting rid of them if they can get back in!