Vole Control - Castor beans?

James R. Fisher garrideb@well.com
Sat, 04 Sep 2004 16:06:09 PDT
James Waddick wrote:
> Dear all;
>     I am sorry I even brought up 'tree rats' (squirrels) and glad I 
> didn't mention 'rats with hooves' (white tail deer) or 'flying rats' 
> (Canadian Geese) which are all garden pests in this area.
>     Instead I got wondering as I was harvesting a few pounds of castor 
> bean seed. Can these be sprinkled around for voles and squirrels to 
> nibble on? They are too big for birds and I can't imagine any domestic 
> animals eating them. If they germinate (not likely here) they are 
> obvious and can be pulled out easily.
>     Could I just chuck a few down a vole run? Or might cats eat castor 
> bean dying voles and also be harmed? any experience?
>         Best    Jim W.
I tried a half-dozen beans where tree rats gather; they nibbled but none
fell over. I suspect the ricin content of raw beans is insufficient
to harm anything, though I didn't chew on any myself...
Jim Fisher
Vienna, Virginia USA
38.9 N 77.2 W
USDA Zone 7
Max. 105 F [40 C], Min. 5 F [-15 C]

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