The Q&A Archives: Need help with pests and seeding

Question: I keep planting pea's corn and a few other type's of seeds but something underground keeps coming and eating them. They are burrowing animals of sometype. What can I do as i am now un succesful on type occations of getting these pea's and corn as well as some other types that i want planted in and remaining there till they germinate. ARRRHGGG...Please Help Thanks..

Answer: Birds - especially jays and crows - will dig newly planted seeds from your garden. Voles, will, too. A Vole looks quite a lot like a mouse. Voles also have shorter tails, and a rounder face than a mouse does. Voles are active day and night. Mostly, they will look for food during the day using the tunnels moles may have made. Travelling in these tunnels they will find roots of plants to eat, destroying lawns, garden perennials and bulbs. They will also search for seed to eat. In winter they are active and do not hibernate. They tend to stay underground under the snow where it is warm, but will search for seed above ground from time to time. When above ground Voles may gnaw on the bottom bark of any fruit trees in your yard. If you are noticing missing bark from the bottom of your fruit trees, tracks in the grass
leading to holes or dead grass patches with chewed off grass left around the area for evidence, it's likely voles.

If you think birds are stealing your seeds, you need only to cover your freshly planted garden plots with bird netting. This will keep them from landing and digging in your garden. If you think voles are the problem, there are a number of ways to eliminate them - some more humane than others.

There are mole and vole repellants on the market; Cats can help control the vole population. No kill mouse traps have been used by gardeners. Just make sure when you release the voles they are released far enough away they won't find their way back.
Make sure to check the traps regularly so the voles don't die of starvation.

Voles are small enough that you can use a regular size mouse trap to kill them in.
Exercise caution if you have pets and kids around the garden.

Best wishes with your vegetable garden!

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