Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Unwelcome February wildlife

The first crocuses came into flower two days ago. They're the purple variety. It's a sure sign that spring is just around the corner. Next will be white and then gold. I think they re more the  harbinger of spring than daffodils because they are that much earlier and even more colourful.

Another but less welcome appearance this February has been a spate of mole hills. It's become a real problem and, although they have actually been evident all winter, their tunnelling has now picked up a pace.

Apparently the critters are there all year round but come close to the surface this month as they search for mates. But more moles is the last thing I want.

I tried trapping them a few years ago when they first appeared but caught nothing. Now I must resort to other solutions.

The problem is quite serious. The tunnels they make under the turf around the garden collapse as you walk over them and we're all prone to twisted ankles. It will also be difficult to avoid chewing up the turf with the lawn mower.

In addition to that, they uproot taller veg such as Brussels sprouts and purple sprouting broccoli , undoing all my had work. They damage the roots of other plants, push bulbs out of place and bury emerging shoots under the mole hills themselves.

Now they have spread from the veg patch, through the orchard, around the pond banks and into the chicken pen. Drastic action is needed. I'll report back.

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