Farmer versus Critter

Farmer versus Critter

Greetings to all again, and thank you for coming back to my little corner.

Today, I want to share with you what happens when animals try to exercise their right to live wherever they want and eat whatever they want. These same critters totally ignore the fact that there is a farmer trying to eke out a living off of that sweet corn that they so nonchalantly eat.

Let’s begin with the four-legged Hoover of the forest, the majestic whitetail deer. Now, the first thought that may pop into your head when thinking of deer is ” Aw, it’s Bambi.”

Please let me explain something. Deer eat the same way that I shop for food: Everything looks good.

Deer walk up and down my rows of corn, never stopping to eat a whole stalk. Oh my no, deer won’t do that. If they would do that, they would be full, and their night out with their buck buddies would be over.

Instead, deer only nibble the tip of each ear, prolonging the evening, thus ruining as many stalks as possible. All the while, deer are giggling over how many colors of red the farmer will turn when he sees the latest destroyed platter of hors d’oeuvres (formerly his promising patch of sweet corn).

It is why this particular farmer has developed a slight facial tic whenever the subject of deer comes up.

DeerMount

One didn’t get away with it.

While deer are irritating, they are far from the only critter on the farm. Another fine example is the timid little field mouse.

Mice are particularly adept at having offspring, if you have one you’ll soon have a hundred. Well, technically, if you have two, you’ll soon have a hundred. With all these offspring, mice also need to make nests so they have a place to grow up and start plotting their own families. For a nest, you’ll need a nice, sheltered spot… and what better place than under those beautiful long rows of plastic that the farmer provides?

Decision being made, mice burrow under the plastic and begin to build their home. At this point, they encounter my drip tape, which trickles out water and nutrients to feed the growing plants.

“Well this simply won’t do,” they say. “We can’t have this ugly hose running through our foyer, Chauncey.”

At which point Chauncey dutifully ventures into the nest and proceeds to chew through my drip tape. The result is twofold. One, they instantly regret passing on flood insurance and two, I now have to repair a leaking drip line.

Groundhogs are another particularly aggravating nemesis of mine. I’m always filling up new holes they dug. It’s my fruitless endeavor to encourage these furry critters to move on to Farmer Jones’s land where maybe they find a more accommodating host. But it never fails; I fill one up and they dig another. It’s as if they know I will soon have to leave to chase the deer and life as they know it will return to the previous bliss that I so rudely interrupted.

All this is a small price to pay to enjoy farming in this beautiful area. If I have to put up with a few uninvited guests to do so, then that I will cheerfully do, although I may go shopping for some deer fence.

Remember to drop by the market and check out our newest items. Kendra found some great granola and a few other tasty treats to add to our offerings.