Monday, June 03, 2013


COONIE BEARS? That was how we were taught that raccoons were members of the bear family, not kitty cats to be played with, but unpredictable wild animals to be respected and avoided if possible. We have a problem with rabies around here, and coons are our #1 carriers. (Might I add at this point that possums are NOT rabies carriers. Just sayin’.) Several times each year we have a battle with raccoons. They always win. No, I do not do anything to hurt them, but it is always a battle of wits. They always win. The battle begins when the garden is new. The coonie bears are into rearranging whatever I plant. Sadly, this means I have to fence in everything to keep it from getting dug up – or dumped. Sure, they can climb any fence, but they don’t seem to like to climb either the nylon fencing or chicken wire. Maybe it doesn’t seem secure enough for them because a friend who has a wooden fence around his garden has his stuff torn up by the coons that climb in and out nightly. Nylon or plastic fencing comes in rolls, is cheap, and easy to put up as long as you don’t wear anything with buttons. Like netting, the small squares can get caught up in buttons quite easily and getting untangled can be a problem, usually because one’s hands are already busy hanging onto fencing, posts, hammers or thingies to tie the fence in place… and, of course, the phone in your pocket usually rings at about this time, too. Sigh. Anyway, since this blog is sort of a diary of what goes on in my yard/garden, that includes vandalism by the 4 footed friends that travel thru looking for munchies- or just for entertainment. DSC_0033

Among other fun activities for the night, they pulled out some of the tomato plants (again) and emptied the pot of dill plants that I grow for the enjoyment of the black swallowtail caterpillars. The basil also got rearranged.

I had just repotted some old geraniums that had wintered over in the greenhouse… apparently the Coonie Bears did not like they way they were potted… so they unpotted them and a few other things. sigh. 

DSC_0035 One of their main attractions when not destroying the garden is looking for left over cat food. Now that Punkin is gone, there is not much in the way of cat food left outside… so they removed the stainless steel bowl that goes in this ant-proof holder. We have not found it yet. They have taken cat dishes before and they were never found. Amazing creatures! So I keep the dry crunchies in a very heavy crockery bowl inside an even heavier crockery bowl, and now Spook is eating out of a pie tin that sits where his big food dish once sat. DSC_0040Fences have gone up where I never bothered to put them before, but the carrots bag got dug out, one bag of onions, and the tomatoes twice in spite of having a ground cloth. 

DSC_0039 DSC_0038 DSC_0041 DSC_0034 Even the potatoes got dug out and are now fenced in.

DSC_0037 This fencing is for the deer since the beans are just at the right height to be nibbled on… and it would be easy for the raccoons to climb up inside – but so far it seems to have kept them out.


ancient one said...

So maybe when I blamed the dog for digging the plant out of one of my pots, I may have been wrong? So far no signs of animals messing up our garden... just insects... Husband bought a new sprayer today and when it stops raining I suspect some bugs on the tomatoes are going to get some spray.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Sorry to read about those pesky coons and guess that's why they have those masked faces to hide their identity? We fenced in our first small garden years and years ago thinking that rabbits would get in. Then, when we had the larger gardens there was no fencing or wiring and we saw rabbits, but they seemed to prefer the grass and clover and never even bothered with the lettuce plants.

Vagabonde said...

It is upsetting to see all your garden work be messed up like this. Last year we planted 8 pots with impatiens flowers and within a couple of week they were all gone, completely. I am still not sure which critter did it.

Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

You are fighting a losing battle against racoons. They are very smart and resourceful. They are also well adapted to living with people. Live trap them and take the deep into the countryside and release them.