Surprises In The Lawn
If you’ve had more than a season of experience caring for a home lawn, chances are you’ve discovered a few surprises out there. Most everyone has seen “mole runs”, mounds of dirt, and raised humps of turf, tell-tale signs of mole activity. And, if you are like most, you’ve searched for ways to rid the lawn of these little insect eaters that destroy grassroots. Most controls, short of mechanical traps simply are not very effective. Nine out of 10 homeowners end up living with the little critters.
But moles are not the only surprises one might encounter as you fire up the John Deere and prepare to mow your lawn.
During the spring and summer, flocks of ducks and geese can roost in and around lawns. While, other than the loud squawking in the early morning, geese and ducks are often seen as entertainment on the property, their droppings are another matter! Golf course maintenance people know only too well, the hassle involved in cleaning up after wandering geese; especially on putting greens. It’s amazing how much “material” ducks and geese can leave behind on the turf.
More often than you might think, predators have been spotted on home lawns, as well. Frightening stories of coyotes lurking at the lawn’s edge are all too common. And, at times, a red fox can be spotted here and there in search of food.
And, what about snakes? Even in the northern part of the country, summer snake activity is common. Most snakes are completely harmless, preferring to pursue mice over people. Still, the sight of a four to six-foot slithering surprise can be nothing short of unnerving. Fortunately, once the snake realizes he has encountered humankind, it will be long gone.
Sometimes it’s all too easy to forget that the animal surprises you find on the lawn were here first. When you stop to think about it, we humans have taken over their ancestral homes. The moles, birds, predatory mammals, and snakes owned the land for centuries. Turns out the biggest lawn surprise of all is us!
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