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More slaughter in the garden

Begonias eaten by voles. Image  ©
A few days ago I posted here about the mysterious pest munching our plants… This morning another disaster. These begonias eaten off at the ground. Every night there seems to be more including four hostas, now, and any number of other plants.

And now that our dense planting is getting thinner (with so many plants decapitated) we can see the holes – there are holes everywhere. And judging by what Nicki The Vole Slayer (left, scroll down) is bringing in every day, the culprits look like (I kid you not) Microtus pennsylvanicusthe meadow vole. Its even named after our state! And a state is exactly what we're in. Can't go on like this.

Nicki will just have to spend more time outside because Dozy Duffy, our other cat who roams inside the deer fence, is to put it mildly – utterly useless as a vole slayer.

OK, time to wake her from her slumbers and get her back to work. There are voles to slay, plants to protect. Where are you Nicki?

UPDATE (two days later): I finally gave in and put out a little trap, I just can't keep losing all these plants. This morning, after the first night - the trap has completely disappeared...


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Elise Fila

Our cat Tillie keeps the voles in check. Over the years, we've had at least one cat that was a good vole hunter. She seems to be keeping the population in check for the time being. We lost our other vole killing cat a few years ago, before Tillie, and the vole population exploded. Lost some perennials under the snow--and you could see all the vole tunnels. Tillie has been a good replacement, and a nice cat besides!

Graham Rice

Our Nicki The Vole Catcher surpassed herself yesterday with four! And she's back out on the prowl again this morning. Duffy the Duffer is asleep.


Hi Graham voles a big problem here especially winter time. We use snap traps baited with licorice. Caught 30 in two days with 10 traps. Watch out for your podophylums as they love these and dig right down and eat the roots as well. They are petty good at mowing off ornamental grass as well. Good luck!

Graham Rice

It was the 'Haspen Blue' hosta that really got me. Quite a few years old, and every one of its thirty or forty leaves were chewed off at the crown in one night. Grasses have mostly been safe up to now - but I have a fat and spreading clump of the pink flowered Podophyllum peltatum with its new bronzed foliage and you have me worried about it now!

But nothing caught by the trap or Nicki The Vole Slayer for a couple of days now...

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