[NAFEX] Identify That Critter

Kevin Moore aleguy33 at yahoo.com
Tue May 19 22:57:41 EDT 2009

Very mysterious. I didn't see anything in the photos that would identify the culprit. having lived in the Bay Area for two and a half decades I'd like to think I knew all the critters that lived there. My best guess is a rat. they will sometimes chew random plant matter if they don't have access to water.
Barring that it could only be a Chupacabra.

From: Spidra Webster <spidra at speakeasy.net>
To: North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Tuesday, May 19, 2009 8:00:40 PM
Subject: [NAFEX] Identify That Critter

I know that a lot of you live in areas where you have to deal with far more mammalian pests than I do. I don't have deer here, for instance. Nor gophers. But something has started mauling my plants recently and the strikes are so illogical I can't put my finger on the culprit.

First was a grape branch (greenwood, not hardwood) that got partway broken and stripped. Then one of my sunflowers (an edible seed kind) was mauled with marks that made me think it has to be a mammal bigger than a squirrel. The marks just seemed too big and drawn,and the sunflower too stiff to easily make them. The unopened bud was gone. It was still a week or more away from opening up.

Today I noticed a young thick avocado branch that got the same treatment. The branch is still attached and hanging off by threads. Which is exactly what happened with the grape and sunflower. It's high enough up in the tree and in a location where humans are out of the picture (humans are the mammals that usually maul my plants, unfortunately).

Meanwhile there are ripe cherries on the trees, ripe strawberries untouched, etc. I can't figure it out. 

Mammals I know are about are raccoons, squirrels, possums and housecats.

Grape damage: http://www.flickr.com/photos/spidra/3539598428/

Sunflower damage: http://www.flickr.com/photos/spidra/3538785249/

Avocado damage: http://www.flickr.com/photos/spidra/3546789537/

If it ends up being a squirrel or something (I have definitely sighted one or two this season), does anyone have tips for the cheapest source of fox urine?

Megan Lynch

Berkeley, CA

CRFG, NAFEX: I'm in USDA Zone 9b

Garden with me on Folia: http://myfolia.com/gardener/spidra/invite
Golden Gate Chapter Blog: http://crfggoldengate.blogspot.com/

CRFG Flickr Pool: http://www.flickr.com/groups/crfg/

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