Monday, June 1, 2009

A Comedy Of Errors ...

It was to be the day of reckoning. We had seen it run around on the field, chewing up E!'s precious asparagus. Understandably E! hated the groundhog, which had built a home under our barn. We borrowed a trap and set it up next to the barn with some tasty strawberries and carrots. We waited for almost a week, until E! checked the trap again this afternoon:


They sure look cute, but they can wreak havoc on a vegetable garden. Interestingly enough, it is illegal (at least in New York) to relocate them, i.e. make them someone else's problem. Therefore there is only one way to get rid of them, groundhog heaven.

The most common stairway to groundhog heaven is paved by a small gun, or drowning. The latter was E!'s preferred method, largely because we don't have a gun. We carried the cage behind the shed, where we have plastic tuns full of water. Clearly we hadn't thought it through all the way, because after we had dumped the cage into the tun, it was still sticking out by a third, the groundhog staying above water, wet and scared, but very much alive. In all that confusion the top door of the cage came open, and a wet and happy groundhog bolted for freedom.

All hard feelings aside, we were somewhat glad it got away. I guess we're not natural born killers.

E! was very busy moving our kitchen stuff into the kitchen, from the wait station, so we can start work on the latter. Now the kitchen looks more like a kitchen ...



... and the dish station looks somewhat empty.


I almost finished hooking up the sink in the dish station, but I was a little slow today, plus I needed to do some soldering in tight spaces. If you want to know what I am talking about, take a propane torch and hold it against one of the walls in your place for two minutes, no, not next to the wall, engulf the wall with the flame. How does that make you feel?

Our friend Jerry would say: Why don't you just use CPVC?! Well, Jerry is right of course, I just wasn't thinking of it before I started the project. It doesn't require open fire, is easier to handle, and I would most likely be done by now. Next time.

Dirk

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm glad he got away too! Perhaps you might consider a fence around your garden, as the groundhog is only the first of many garden raiders. Rabbits have decimated the herbs I put in my parents garden this year. So killing the animals is a losing proposition for you . . .

J Bird said...

If anyone out there has a bit of money and/or land and wants to start a Groundhog Rescue, there would be many happy humans in Clintondale!

Anonymous said...

I'm no fan of groundhogs, their holes can break my horses' legs. But sometimes there's an easier and more effective way of dealing with varmints than killing them. Even if you killed this one, how many more are behind him? And the rabbits? etc etc -- you are outnumbered! Better (tho admittedly more expensive) to fence the garden off.

In my case I was able to get rid of the groundhogs by putting used kitty litter down the holes, waiting a few days, and then filling the holes. Cheap, easy, and incidentally humane. I should say I tried gassing them out with poison, and having a neighbor shoot them, and neither of these methods worked . . .

Leslie

J Bird said...

Okay, Leslie - I'm sold. But what is it about the litter that does them in?

Anonymous said...

Apparently groundhogs are very fastidious and they are repelled (and disgusted :-) ) by the kitty litter. Don't know if that is actually true, it is what was told to me. All I know is I have been able to clear two fields that had a fair amount of holes (five?) in them before fencing them and putting my horses in.

Leslie

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