Ongoing battle with Deer and Groundhogs

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by Deb Mc., May 1, 2004.

  1. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    Hello everyone!

    Any suggestions as to what I can do about a groundhog and deer problem, please?

    Here are the particulars:

    I live at the edge of a suburban area that borders on farmland. The past few years my neighbors and I have been waging an ongoing war with a family of groundhogs. I think we're starting to get the upper hand, as my neighbor has been able to run over a few of the hogs. There's one old "Granpa" silverback groundhog left, so traps may not finish him off because he's too smart.

    Also, starting last year, I think because of new housing developments being built, deer have started coming into our suburban area and are decimating the gardens. I had 5'+ tomatoes in containers that were shredded. After that the deer went after my Bell peppers, the purple coneflowers and then the Brown-eyed Susans. :waa: I tried the spray-on hot pepper wax, sprayed it on religiously, but it didn't stop them, those deer must like salsa or something.

    Anyway, because of being suburban zoned, some of my options are limited, such as I can't use a gun within town limits (darnit!), hence me starting to pull my hair out...

    Thanks and God Bless! :)
     
  2. james dilley

    james dilley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    how about silent but deadly, a good crossbow even one thats a pistol or a regular bow.
     

  3. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    Hi James!

    That's a good idea! Do you know of any places that sell a hand-crank crossbow? I'm working on my upper arm strength, but right now I don't have enough muscles to do the 150 lb. pull most crossbows need.

    I DO like the crossbow better than the recurve or compound though as it's much easier to hold and for longer periods of time waiting for the right shot.

    Thanks again!
     
  4. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    Another question, all:

    Does anyone have any advice as to what kind of fencing is best to keep out deer and groundhogs? Will electric fence work, lumber, or is chain-link (expensive!) my best bet?

    Thanks again!
     
  5. Ardie/WI

    Ardie/WI Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Groundhogs HATE used cat litter. We got rid of them by sprinkling it around their burrows.(Heck, I hate used cat litter!)

    As for deer...well, let me explain. We live in the country-deer are everywhere. Our garden was behind the barn. We put down black plastic with old boards holding it down and cut holes for what we planted. We found that deer hated the plastic. It might have been the noise it made when they walked on it...we don't know, but they stayed away.
     
  6. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    Ardie,

    Thank you VERY much! I've five cats here at the house (two are mine, two are Mom's and one belongs to my brother), so finding some used cat litter won't be an issue. :D How long should I keep spreading it around the burrow? Does it take many applications for it to drive the groundhogs out?

    Re: Deer - Thanks for that info too! I'll check around to see what's here locally. It would be cheaper than the "Fort Knox" fencing option, that's for certain!

    Thanks again... :)
     
  7. Ardie/WI

    Ardie/WI Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you can find their borrows, just pour the used litter right in!

    They might try to set up a new residence, so you have to hunt that down and repeat!

    We pegged down the plastic with long lengths of wire bent to look like unstapled staples (If that makes any sense!)
     
  8. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    Ardie,

    Ok, thanks! Dumping it in will do just fine, I'll be grinning with evil glee as I pour. It'll make it easier on the trashmens' backs too, since the litter won't be going out in the garbage...

    Understood about the "yard staples" - good idea for keeping the plastic in place, especially if there's a high wind.

    Thanks again!
     
  9. james dilley

    james dilley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    a crossbow pistol would be the way to go ,and get the cocking device thats a stirup you put you foot in and cock it.,don't forget the bow wax ether. how a bout a nussiance permit to kill the deer??? if they are destroying your crops.so to speak.
     
  10. Deb Mc.

    Deb Mc. Member

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    James,

    Good question! I'll have to ask around. The crossbow pistol sounds perfect for the groundhogs, but would it be usable against deer, if I were able to obtain a permit?

    Thanks again...
     
  11. GeorgeK

    GeorgeK Well-Known Member

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    Dog?
    If not a dog, then mark you territory. Deer dont seem to want to be near trees or plants that have male human urine sprinkled on (near, like on fenceposts etc) them after every rain. If you have nearby neighbors you could collect it in a bottle indoors and just say you are using a completely organic deer repellant. Dont know about groundhogs, we got too many coyotes to have a problem with groundhogs.
     
  12. JJ Grandits

    JJ Grandits Well-Known Member

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    My woodchuck problem is usually removed with the "hollow point" solution. An old farmer friend of mine says to take some old bread, split it open and pour some anti-freeze into in. Stuff this well down the holes.I guess woodchucks like the sweet taste.
     
  13. violets

    violets Member

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    Another deer solution... lay chicken wire (one inch holes) down on the ground around the perimeter of your property. They don't like to walk on it. The grass will grow up through it and it will be an invisible barrier.