tomato leaves eaten....

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Hornworm moths lay their eggs on the leaves. :-( They don't eat the stems.
I try to hand pick the little buggers when possible, not the least because it's so much fun to watch the ducks fight over them when I toss them in with the poultry! Especially the larger ones. <G>
For birds, try some pinwheels, and those are decorative! Owl decoys are also good and Wal-Mart has a nice supply of them right now. Just move them weekly and make sure they cast a shadow.
K.
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I have a 99 cent pinwheel that's the "Slinky" brand, and it's been sitting out here in the desert sun and high winds for about a year now and still looks like new. It does help with the birds, tho doesn't do anything to discourage kangaroo rats.
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il Tue, 11 May 2004 02:40:07 -0500, Katra ha scritto:

They sound a pain.

I'm not sure our birds would know what an owl is. As it's drawing to winter here it's more a matter of me getting out and cleaning up the garden.
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They are. :-(
I found a teensy one the other day on one of my tomato plants...
It's worm dip now. <G>

Might be instinctive. :-) Owl decoys work very well for pest birds, and pigeons!
K.
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We have two real live owls in residence, and they don't seem to discourage the starlings much! :(
~REZ~
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Rez) wrote:

They sleep in the trees during the day. ;-)
Owl decoys are out in the open, and you are supposed to make sure that they cast a shadow. That is how the local wildlife rescue folks told me to use them.
K.
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snipped-for-privacy@aotearoa.invalid says...

I use coffee cans half buried around my tomatoes. Seems to stop both hornworms and cutworms, and I suspect slugs as well. Also handy for watering - just fill the can :-).
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says...

Doesn't seem to be a problem. I bury the tomato plant, as recommended, when transplanting it into the garden. So the existing roots are near, if not below, the bottom of the can from the beginning.
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Speaking of lizards, couple days ago I saw a type I'd not seen before (SoCal desert) -- it was blue, looked like an iguana (big thick head and body, not a skinny "snake with legs" like most of our little desert lizards) and kinda spiny all over.

Pyrethrins work just as well, break down very fast, and are harmless to warmblooded creatures even if ingested. And try insecticidal soap (essentially a mix of dish soap to choke bugs, and canola oil to make it stick to stuff). Hornworms curl up and die right before your eyes. Only had to spray the tomatos 2x last year, and they responded to the soap by growing into 12 foot long vines with LOTS of fruit.

Try listening for them. When they're disturbed, they make this odd mechanical noise. Then you can hone in on the sound and get 'em.

Not much less than a maniac with an axe :(
~REZ~
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Rez) wrote:

Probably a western fence lizard???

Hmmmmm... I did used to use Pyrethrin in the henyard for flies but now that I have my duck flock back, I no longer have a fly control problem. ;-) Never tried them much on the food plants. I worry about killing my spiders tho'. :-(

Can anyone tell me how to control rats without poisoning? Traps dont' work. Rats are too smart.
K.
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<goes googling> Nope, tho that looks like the little "snake with legs" type we have tons of. This one was distinctly BLUE and I've never seen one like it before. It had the bulky head of an iguana, and a thick body to match, but had little lumpy spines kindof all over rather than just one down the back like an iguana does. Very quick and agile, went up the cinder block wall in a flash.

Whereas here flies pretty much starve unless you provide something that likes to make a mess in water, like ducks. <g>

Here the main spiders are black widow (both the passive and the leggy aggressive types) and brown recluse. Our big worry is whether we can get them all killed off before they take over, or eat us alive. My tenant got bit by one in her bed yesterday. One reason I keep atropine on hand is for spider bites. And if you're gone for 3 days, when you come back the house will be chock full of black widow webs, to the point that it looks like a movie spook house (no kidding). Hanging dichlorvos no-pest strips helps esp. with the black widows. Doesn't seem to bother the wolf spiders, either, tho we don't see many of those anyway.
I've noticed a few golden garden spiders among the roses lately, but they're not typically a desert spider. Probably only surviving here because my place is sortof a little oasis :)

Well, I once did chop up a misbehaving typewriter ... tho after fighting with it for several years (couldn't get parts, had to repair it myself, which was always an adventure).

Where I lived before, we got invaded by roof rats, which are so prolific that traps and poison are a waste of effort. But every morning I'd find 5 or 6 drowned in the dogs' water buckets, and several more killed by one of my dogs (I breed Labradors). If there's no other open water, you can lure 'em into big buckets or small garbage cans with a foot or so of water in the bottom, deep enough that they fall in when they try to drink, and enough water down there that they can't get out so they eventually drown. (And no, I have absolutely no sympathy for suffering rodents. :)
Or get a Jack Russell terrier and don't feed it, so it has to hunt. They're good rat dogs and have no qualms about eating rats. :)
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Rez) wrote:

I've considered that...
Will they eat chickens? Most of the rats are in the henyard which is why they are here. Plenty of food. :-(
That is why a water trap would not work unless I dumped water containers every night. We do find them drowned in the emu's water buckets now and then!
Kat
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Yeah, a dog will eat chickens too :( Cats generally leave chickens alone (at least after their first good pecking :) but don't seem to be much on killing rats.
Rats can survive on just manure for food, but they'll eat about anything that doesn't eat them first.

Rats are very curious and like to climb up into things, so even if there is other water around, they still get into buckets and drown (awww, so sad :) Also, dog food makes a great lure for rats and mice -- see if you can rig something where they can smell it and will fall into the water while trying to get to the dog food.
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The mice kept getting into stuff in our garage. After getting a couple with a regular trap they got too smart and avoided them, so I tried a water trap and it worked very well.
I used a 5 gallon bucket with a shallow pot saucer filled with seeds floating on the top of the water. We made a way for them to get to the top of the bucket and we kept the water at a level that was just a bit to deep for them to climb out. It worked very efficiently and a dead mouse in the bottom of the water did not keep others from trying. One day I found three of them dead in it. They just couldn't resist trying for that seed. We got rid of the whole family apparently, because I have not seen any for quite a while now.
Linda
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Yet another excellent idea... :-)
K.

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Another method I forgot about that works and will absolutely prevent escapes, is to take a 5 gallon bucket with a lid, fill it half to 2/3rds full of water, put a rat-sized hole in the lid, then smear peanut butter or molasses on the inside of the lid near the edge, so they have to really reach for it and lose their grip on the edge of the hole, thus fall in and drown.
I probably drowned a couple hundred rats just in an open bucket one year, and it wasn't even the only water around, just somewhere curious rats liked to snoop in. Evidently they never get wise to it.
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snipped-for-privacy@earthlink.net (Rez) wrote:

Oh, I LIKE this! :-)
I need to go and get some buckets with lids!!!!!!
Thanks! K. (who is really going to try this one right away!)
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I never even bothered with the lid part, but if you have a need to bait 'em to the bucket, it makes a handy place to smear the bait!
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Hi Katra,

I get rats with rat glue on a piece of plywood very success upto an extent that other wonder how this can be.
The area of glue apply are depend on the size of rat. Minimum length should be two and a half of the rat length(not included tail). Minimum width should be two and a half of the rat width. This is due to the observe from me that when rat first step on the glue, it will be able to make a jump. After the jump, if the front claw of rat are out of the glue area, the rat will got chance to escape by crawlling with front claw. Three side of plywood should have minimum one inch of margin clear of glue for our thumb to hold when placing the plywood. The side with glue should touch wall.
The plywood should put at rat path(where rat like to run through along a wall). Or the rat jump from a place to reach another place, if the rat jump to your table to eat your food, put the plywood on the table at that spot.
Plywood should be lay flat, if it's slanted, the weight of rat will slowly pull rat off the glue area.
The glue should chose the less smell type, or else you may need few days to wait for the small disappear before get your first rat.
The glue should not be watery.
After removed the rat from glue, hold plywood slanted under water tap to wash off rat *output*. <g> And put it slanted against a wall to let water drip off.
Refill the part lack of glue that due to remove with rat together.
All this should be quite easy to understand.
The tough part are I don't know how to explain the way to apply glue. If the glue does not apply correctly to the plywood, rat will be able to escape quite easily.
A piece of plywood can get as much of about ten rat per night, this is assume that you remove the rat when you heard it *sqeet* to free up the space.
From my experience, as long as you put it at the right place, you can glue bird, fly, snake, ... Almost anything that does not in the water.
Regards, Wong
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Time I think to just use Glue traps. ;-) I normally hate those things, but I'm also not afraid to just kill the rat when I find it in the glue trap so it won't suffer.
Trick will be in putting the traps where my pigeons won't get into them. The rats do run up the trees out back!
I have some ideas...
Thanks! K.
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