Monday, July 22, 2013

Me vs. the Ground Hog

If you have been reading my blog for sometime now, you know of my problems with a ground hog. You can read about the beginning of it here.

We have tried many things to get rid of her. We tried both homemade and commercial versions of a pepper spray (Critter Ridder). Both of them kinda sort of worked, but only the first day or two, then the ground hog got use to it.

We also tried these solar powered sonic things. They worked a bit better, but eventually failed. Sorry for the foggy picture, but the camera was in a nice cold ac house and it was 100 outside, so the camera fogged up a bit. We had two of these and were given to us while we were out at some yard sales. If they worked, awsome, if not, then we didn't pay anything for them.

These sonic things did help us catch a surprise though. After we put them in the ground (this one was near the shed), I was working in the garden, when I herd some whimpering coming from under the shed. I walked around the shed and sure enough, I saw a hole dug going under it. I grabbed Steve and we set the have a heart trap right outside the hole. Then I went inside.

About an hour later, I poked my head out the backdoor to see if we caught anything. I got soo excited to see some movement in the trap. I woke up Steve from his nap, while I grabbed my camera and headed outside to see the thing. Only the big ground hog wasn't in it. But instead, I saw these little guys:

These two are baby ground hogs. Kinda cute aren't they? Stinky little buggers though. They enjoyed a nice feast of parsley and some butternut squash leaves. They must have just been kicked out of the family burrow and decided that our shed was a perfect spot to live. It is, after all, right next to a buffet of food. We put them in the back of the truck and drove them a nice distance away near some water and food but far away from homes.

Now all we have to do it catch their mom. She is the one that has been really bothering us. Eating all out bush bean plants so that now we will have nothing to harvest from them. I eventually was ok with that because we have pole beans that are growing very nicely. Plus the ground hog didn't know about them. Yet.

I woke up one morning to see some nibbling on the pole beans. I freaked out. Now this is what the pole beans looked like:

This was taken the first week of July. Eventually they were very full and growing up the poles. This is what they looked like this morning:

Just stems and sticks left. Well pretty much. I might be able to salvage these, but I am ready to go to the farm down the street and ask how much a bushel of green beans will be.

Ever sense she started eating these pole beans, I have turned into Bill Murray from Caddy Shack. I just want her gone any way possible. I preferred a humane way, but at this point, I don't care how she gets gone.

Today we put up a fence around the garden beds. I got a 120.00 gift card from Lowes as a rebate from when I bought my washer and dryer, so we used that to buy fencing and poles. All we paid was 5.27 out of pocket. We aren't suppose to have a fence up per the park owners, but this fence will come down once the harvesting is finished and will go back up first thing in the spring before I start sowing the seeds in the beds.

While we were putting it up, one of our neighbors came over to see. Most of our neighbors are really nice and won't say anything or complain about the fence. All except one neighbor. And that one happens to live directly next to us. We will deal with that when it happens though. So while we were talking to the neighbor who came over, he said that he knows where the ground hog was living. He took us over to the neighbor next to him and right between this guys shed and oil tank we saw this:

A really big hole that our ground hog can fit in very easily. We brought over our have a heart trap, put some fresh cut apples in it and put some apple pieces down the burrow hole. We asked our neighbor to come get us if he hears any noise, but that we also will be over a few times a day to check on it.

We also have some fox urine that we will be putting around our fence. I have also herd that you can use rags soaked in ammonia tied around the garden, slivers of Irish Spring soap around the garden, Epson salts sprinkled right on the plants (it is good for them too, like for the pepper plants). Of course anything that moves, like pinwheels or motion sensor things. We haven't tried any of these things, but just might. We have everything but the pinwheels, but I can get those at the dollar store.

Now I am praying that we either catch her in the trap or the fence does the trick and she stays away from the garden.

Read the next chapter in this little "adventure" here.

1 comment:

  1. I loved your article, it was very informative...would love it if you hopped on by our blog hop on Sunday...The Homesteaders Hop.


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