Hoping someone will be able to offer some suggestions...
We've recently relocated fom the burbs to a country home with wonderful
established gardens outside of Eugene, OR. The rear yard borders on a
couple of acres of woods & blackberries and is deer fenced, so our
local heard doesn't intrude. Front yard is fruit trees and pasture with
a lawn & landscaping near the house.
Have recently noticed several well defined 2-3 foot wide circular
depressions - as though an animal had been sleeping - appearing in tall
garden foliage in the backyard, right next to the back deck. No
indication that the beastie is eating anything in the area, no nesting
materials evident, no tracks, burrows, droppings or access to area
under house/deck. Plants involved have been borage & native geranuims.
We've never seen anything inhabiting the depressions - either during
the day or at night by flashlight.
I'd guess a stray cat, but our 2 Siamese sleep on the adjacent deck (in
their own little house) & are very territorial when it comes to other
house cats. The cats came with the house & are used to living
peacefully with the local wild animals (skunks, opossums, racoons,
squirrels, moles, & a wide variety of birds including wild turkeys).
Our immediate neighbor reported hearing a very unusual ear jarring
howling the other night, but had no idea what it was...we're not prone
to coyotes, but do get reports of the odd cougar or bobcat. Did notice
a lone limping deer a couple of weeks ago, but the deer have been
strangely absent of late. I do have veggie beds in the same area,
filled with radishes, lettuces, tomatoes, & broccoli which are
untouched, so I don't think its bunnies. Would appreciate input -
whatever this critter is, it's pretty hard on the garden & we'd sure
like to know what we're dealing with.