Field of Science

A minor garden triumph over wildlife

The biggest problem with having a wildlife friendly property is that it is wild life friendly.  Sometime this spring a member of our native species of marmot, locally called a woodchuck (as in "How much wood could a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood.")  These are nice attractive animals, quite like a large, voracious guinea pig.  So far this season, our lettuce and broccoli has been eaten to nubs three times.  Fortunately spinach is not in the woodchuck play list.  Parsley, cilantro, and especially bellflowers are favorites, and this fellow would pass through Mrs. Phactor's perennial garden like it was a cafeteria.  Ah, but that ended yesterday when the lure of a nice big chunk of apple (one of the best uses of red delicious taken out of storage). This was a very well-fed healthy young fellow of interdeterminate sex, and they were relocated to a woodchuck preserve maintained by our local municipality.  However, as the season is deep into May, our chances of getting very much more in the way of lettuce or broccoli are limited until fall.  Now if only something could be done to reduce the populations of squirrels and rabbits.  Part of the problem is that the local idiots go crazy everything they see a red fox, call the city, and their animal control people remove them from the area (usually permanently).  Here foxy, foxy, foxy!  Nice juicy bunnies!  This is how to stay friendly to wild life. 

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