REPLY: Moles and other Geophyte predators

Jane McGary
Fri, 30 Dec 2005 16:20:30 PST
Ernie O'Byrne and his authorities are indeed right about the Townsend's 
mole eating bulbs. They eat plenty of tulips and  crocuses here.

My preferred mode of attack, other than the dogs (which catch them often at 
night), is the Giant Destroyer, which is a stinking smoke flare that you 
light and shove down their runs. I don't know whether it kills them or just 
offends them, but they do depart for a while. The very name of the device 
is satisfying, too.

Of course, the territorial animals soon come back, their population always 
replaced by new ones from the forests and fields. You could probably get 
rid of them in an urban setting, however.

In a catalog I see a battery-operated rat trap which is supposed to 
electrocute the rats. I wonder if it would work for squirrels? Can a few 
batteries really electrocute a small animal? It's $70, but I may invest in 
one just to see. I noticed a squirrel streaking across the field the other 
day and suspect it may be what's after my crocuses, though they're far 
enough from trees that I didn't expect squirrels to approach them. (The 
local squirrel species, the Douglas squirrel, named for David Douglas of 
plant-hunting fame, is smaller than the European and eastern American 
species.) So far my desperation maneuver of putting dishes of sunflower 
seeds in the bulb frame has forestalled any more digging of crocuses, but 
it's not a really good idea.

Jane McGary
Northwestern Oregon, USA

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