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Something ALIVE making holes in yard.

Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2006
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by afgreyparrot on April 03, 2004 05:46 PM
[nutz]
There are little holes that pop up in different places in my yard. They are numerous in my bird area, which makes me think that the creature that makes them likes to eat bird seed. I just finished a stone walkway and there are several of these holes in the dirt between the rocks.
I have never seen anything (alive) around these holes. I've gotten up at different times throughout the night and gone outside with a flashlight to try to see what is making them! They are just big enough to stick your finger in, but I don't dare stick my finger in one of them! Some are smaller, some larger.
Does anyone know what creature is doing this? There is no slug slime around the holes.
Thanks for any info.
-----------------------------------------
I had photos on here, but they keep disappearing!
So, maybe by the description someone can give me an idea.

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by catlover on April 04, 2004 05:16 AM
Gopher???? [Roll Eyes]

Be careful...snakes like gopher holes and gophers [clappy] Ground squirrels will also use their runs...as well as irrigation drain pipes. [Frown]

Do you just have mounds or do you have an uplifting trail of dirt/grass?

Gophers rarely come to the surface but when they do my cat is there waiting for them....in fact he just got 2 more this week.

Moles have the raised trail!

Catlover

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by afgreyparrot on April 04, 2004 08:13 AM
I wish I could get a photo to stay on here! (Don't know what I'm doing wrong, but it's here for awhile, then when I check back later...GONE!)
These holes are small...too small for something with fur. I could put my finger down in several of them, but that's about it. I'd say "finger-size" is a good description of the width. There is dirt piled around them like crawldad holes (uhh...does the rest of the world know what a crawldad hole looks like?). These look like miniature crawldad holes! It really has me baffled. I have lost sleep trying to catch SOMETHING out there digging these holes, but for a YEAR now I haven't been able to catch the culprit! They aren't hurting anything really. I have a lot of grubs here and slugs, but like I said...no slug slime around them. It's just bugging the *"%#! out of me wondering what in the world it could be!

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jillie on April 04, 2004 02:31 PM
In my "Bugs, Slugs and Other Thugs" book, it says to sprinkle flour around the holes and then check the next morning to see what kind of l'il footprints you have.... [dunno]

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by Phil and Laura on April 04, 2004 04:12 PM
Email those Pics to me Cindy, I "think" I know what your CREATURE is! wwd479@netscape.net [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [wayey]
by catlover on April 04, 2004 07:42 PM
Now I'm a very curious Catlover....what is it Phil? [dunno]

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by afgreyparrot on April 05, 2004 06:58 AM
Well.....
"Phil and Laura" say it might be ........
.............TOADS!
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I have spread flour down around the holes, and with my forensic experience I should be able to tell if it's a toad track that I find. (Doubt if it'll come out tonight, though...supposed to be 26 degrees tonight!)
Let's see...a preying mantis has kicked my #%! and I was almost killed by a chicken. What can I expect from a toad?????

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jillie on April 05, 2004 10:09 AM
WARTS? [wayey] [wayey] [wayey] [muggs] [grin]

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by afgreyparrot on April 05, 2004 03:11 PM
[Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [clappy]

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Phil and Laura on April 05, 2004 03:39 PM
The reason that I am guessing toads(and sorry for the brevity of my email Cindy, was really tired) is that I sit old small terra cotta pots in the garden for the toads to hide under, and in hot weather, they burrow down under them, to get even cooler. The holes look the same, also I have watched at night and from the light of the dusk to dawn light I watched toads come from the flower garden by the house foundation, when I checked it out there were holes, relative in size to the toads!BUT WITH YOUR HISTORY I'd be careful Cindy [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [grin]
by catlover on April 05, 2004 09:43 PM
Cindy....did you happen to find out who the little culprit was?????

Now Cindy will be coming back with a question on how to read flour tracks. [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

That was a good idea Jillie....using the flour.

I don't have any toads/frogs here!!! [Eek!]

My sister lives about 8 miles from my house and all you hear is frogs/toads all night! When they first moved in....my sister went to open the front door and there was one of those frogs that have suction cups for feet attached to the glass part of her door..... [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] I didn't even have to get involved to hear her scream.LOL

Curious Catlover [dunno]

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by afgreyparrot on April 05, 2004 11:01 PM
Well, my parrot started barking last night and I looked outside to find my neighbor's dog licking up the flour!
(I wasn't going to mention that, because I'm sure you all already think I'm a nut [Embarrassed] case. Just seems like nothing is SIMPLE for me! Everything I do seems to turn into an "episode". But, since you asked.....)
SO...tonight I am going to put a big bucket over the hole so the dogs can't destroy my crime scene investigation. (I watch too much t.v.)

With my luck, the poor little creature will be out doing something and won't be able to get back home because of the bucket!

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jiffymouse on April 07, 2004 01:18 AM
[dunno] well, cindy [dunno] inquiring minds want to know [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin]
by afgreyparrot on April 07, 2004 02:01 AM
O.K....if you really want to know.
It's an extra-terrestrial!
What else could it be?
No prints last night in the flour, but the hole is bigger!
My brother is in the Home Security business, and if it doesn't leave prints tonight I'm going to borrow a "Mini-Frog-Hole-Cam" from him tomorrow.

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jiffymouse on April 07, 2004 03:49 AM
sound like a plan to me [thumb]
by The Plant Doc on April 07, 2004 01:57 PM
Sounds like you could have shrews, they are tiny little meat eating machines that live in lawns. They look simular to a small thin mouse but are not rodents. They leave small holes in your lawn with little to no soil accumulated around the out side of the hole. We have had quite a few customers get them in this area. They will not erally damage your lawn but can be a unsightly pest for a little while.
There is no real way to get rid of them, you don't want to go after their food supply because they eat earth worms, and with out them, your lawn would turn into rock.
The good news is that they rarely stay in one area for more then a season before moving on.

Hope this Helps

Mike

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Mike Maier
aka
The Plant Doc
by afgreyparrot on April 08, 2004 01:41 AM
Mike,
I thought you were bull#%@*ing me about the shrews!
(I thought a shrew was a fictitious animal that lived around fairies.)

But, I looked it up on the internet.
They have their own websites!
Man, thoses suckers are SMALL!
I hope that's what it is, because the website said that, according to Chinese folklore, if you have shrews that means you have money coming.
I could use some money!

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by rue anemone on April 08, 2004 02:05 AM
Hey are they miner bees?

I have those but usually a bit later in the year when it is warmer but you are further south than me.

When the sun is out lay down and look across the whole you will see the bees coming and going. They stay inside when it is cold and rainy.

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by The Plant Doc on April 08, 2004 02:48 AM
Cindy

In that case I hope they are shrews and I hope you get the cash! [grin]

Rue Anemone

The only minor bees that I know of that can make a hole that big around would be the cicada killer wasp, and I don't think they come out until about mid August. It may be a bit earlier down south like you mentioned and I don't know for certain.
Either case shew or bee I would not go dangling my finger down in the hole. It could wind up being a really big OUCH!!! [Eek!]

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Mike Maier
aka
The Plant Doc
by catlover on April 08, 2004 03:53 AM
You guys are making me soooo curious I am about ready to fly there and dig into that hole myself. [Big Grin] [Big Grin]

[kitty]

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by afgreyparrot on April 08, 2004 05:45 AM
I'm going to try again to put a photo on here.

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Right now I have flour all around the hole, and a few little pieces of raw steak. It has me so curious that if I don't get any footprints tonight, I'm going to have my brother come this week-end and set up a surveillance camera, complete with a web address so I can watch it from my computer. Don't worry...I'll give you guys the address so if you get REALLY bored, or can't sleep, you can stare at the "Mystery Hole" for awhile!
Gee...I need to get a life, don't I?

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jiffymouse on April 08, 2004 11:17 AM
i dunno cindy, sounds like you got a pretty good life to me [thumb] i'd like to know what the critter is too, and if you get the webcam set up, i definitly want the address!
by Phil and Laura on April 08, 2004 03:53 PM
Not trying to sound CRUEL here but before you Call up CSI, Sherlock or Miss Marple and have a live camera crew "ON THE SCENE" Why don't ya try a little water from your garden hose trickling into the hole that is the largest, and watch. Something is BOUND to make an exit! [perplexed]
by afgreyparrot on April 08, 2004 05:56 PM
You know, I thought about that [nutz] , but didn't know if it would kill whatever was in there. Plus, I didn't want to p*$$ it off in case it WAS a shrew, to make sure I get my money! (Chinese shrew folklore didn't specify a dollar amount, so I haven't actually SPENT it yet, however there were SEVERE conseqences involved if you harmed one!)
But, I guess when it rains water goes in, so I may as well try it. There was definitely activity around the hole last night, but it's little feet are so small that I could just see the flour messed up, but not a specific "print".

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by weezie13 on April 08, 2004 06:16 PM
Cindy,

Would it be a snake???

Not sure what brand you have down there,
would they dig in?????

Is there a second hole??
Usually they have an escape route....

Weezie

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by catlover on April 08, 2004 07:46 PM
[Big Grin] Cindy....this is a good mystery....we are all sitting on the edge of our chairs in anticipation. [Big Grin]

Ohhhh my....don't drown whatever it is!!!!! It could be something that took over a hole from some other creature. [dunno] My mom has gopher holes and squirrels holes and the gopher snakes/rattlers take them over and well eat whatever is in there. At least the gopher population decreased.....but I would rather have the furry animals to deal with than those snakes. Ewwwwwwwe!!!!!

If you get that camera .....I will sure be watching. [Big Grin] [Big Grin] Maybe you could send this whole ordeal to some show on TV..... [thinker] maybe that is where the money will be made.LOL
Catlover

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by afgreyparrot on April 08, 2004 07:52 PM
There are many holes, especially under the bird feeders, so I doubt if it's snakes. We do have plenty here, though!

What you said about the escape hole got me tickled because I pictured myself putting the water down in the hole, then waiting....and waiting... and not taking my eyes off the hole, while the critter just goes out another hole that I'm not watching. I wish he knew I don't want to hurt him, because he's not hurting me. I'm just so curious!
The entertainment value of this hole is great for me! My husband asked last night "What's your next mission going to be when you finally find out what's in the hole?"

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by gardengal on April 08, 2004 08:31 PM
This has been so entertaining. I can't wait to find out what it is. My money is on the shrew since its good luck and all... [grin] Keep us posted!

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Women and cats will do as they please. Men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.
by obywan59 on April 13, 2004 07:05 PM
Cindy, I had the same situation. A couple of holes in my yard under the bird feeder. Now, my bird feeder sits right outside a window by my dining room table and one day I was sitting there eating and I saw the cuplrit. It was a mole. He would pop up just long enough to grab a sunflower seed and then disappear to eat it.

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Terry

May the force be with you
by afgreyparrot on April 13, 2004 08:07 PM
Well, I found some more holes yesterday. This one is in my crabgrass garden:
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I put a dime beside it so you could relate more to the size of the hole.
I dug this hole up, and found nothing. But, I found another about 6 feet from this one and when I turned the shovel full of dirt over, there was the biggest GRUB you would ever want to see. (Not that anyone would want to see a big grub...every time I see one I think about someone eating it on "Fear Factor"!)
Don't know if the grub just happened to be in the shovel of dirt, or if he was the one who made the hole. And, this sucker was HUGE. The biggest, fattest grub I have EVER seen!
Do you think my "mystery holes" could be made by grubs? We have a lot of them here. We put a mini camera at one of the holes by the front door, but haven't seen any movement yet. (Sorry, I couldn't get it on the World Wide Web so EVERYONE could stare at it!)

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by obywan59 on April 13, 2004 09:52 PM
That hole looks to small for a mole. Are the ones by your bird feeders the same size? That looks about the size of a ground bee hole I had in my yard years ago.

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Terry

May the force be with you
by afgreyparrot on April 13, 2004 10:14 PM
The one with the dime is about as big as they get. A lot of them are that size, but quite a few smaller ones, too.

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by erak on April 13, 2004 11:24 PM
My guess is a mole cricket or a wasp. Sure would be neat if you could set up a camera and watch. You will have all of us watching with you.
by gardengal on April 22, 2004 11:56 PM
Cindy, any updates??? Inquiring minds want to know. [grin]

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Women and cats will do as they please. Men and dogs should relax and get used to the idea.
by catlover on April 23, 2004 05:47 AM
Cindy...what happens when you put dirt back over the hole??? [dunno] Nope...not a gopher...that hole is way to small.
[kitty]

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by afgreyparrot on April 24, 2004 03:08 PM
I hadn't checked the holes for a few days because I've been sick (well, don't know if you'd call it "sick"...a tumor in my left breast, and one the size of a 3 1/2 month pregnancy in my uterus), so I didn't do too much outside for a few days. We had a huge rain, and now the holes are gone. I think it is from grubs. I have never seen so many HUMONGOUS grubs before! Every time I stick the shovel in the ground and dig even one shovel full of soil, it has grubs in it. I started carrying a little yogurt cup with me when I garden, and I put the grubs in it, then dump it into one of my open bird feeders on the way into the house. The birds love it! I'm hoping to train them to just hang out with me when I'm digging so they can grab the grubs right out of the shovel and I won't have to touch them. About 15 years ago I had a pet chicken that stayed with me when I worked outside (Hazel), and she'd grab anything that was alive out of the dirt when I was digging. She LOVED grubs! She was one happy hen!!!

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by weezie13 on April 24, 2004 09:53 PM
Cindy,
Are you okay!!!!???? [shocked] [dunno] [gabby]
Did you have them removed???

Weezie

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by gardenmom32210 on April 24, 2004 09:58 PM
So sorry to hear about your illness. Are you doing better now? I think the problem might be mole crickets, they leave holes like that when they emerge. They're coming out all over down here.

Karen [grin]
by 4Ruddy on April 27, 2004 02:26 AM
Cindy,
I don't know if you have caught your culprit yet, but I have to tell you that those holes look just like the ones in my yard...I have hundreds of them. Mine are from crawdads! Even if you plug the hole up they come out in a different spot. Rarely do you see the "live" crawdad...as a matter of fact we have only actually seen a couple of them after a big rain.I think they usually come out at night. The crawdads aren't very big..and are the same color as the ground so they are difficult to see unless they are moving. The other news I have for you is that we are BEGGING for a solution! We have tried just about everything with out success! We have sprayed in the holes...covered them up...dug around them...used every chemical known to man...and still we have more holes! So, maybe that is what you have..if so....good luck! We certainly haven't had any!

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Happiness, like a dessert so sweet.
May life give you more than you can ever eat...
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by Brown Thumb on April 28, 2004 04:13 PM
Cindy,

This hole problem is the exact reason why I came to this site. I have many of these holes as mentioned plus I have many of what looks like Nightcrawler mounds or ant mounds with them.
I have to watch what I put on the lawn due to my dogs. I was about to call a lawn care professional but thought I would search the web for answers first.
Thanks for your dedicated investigation .

I have now been given hope that I may be infested with shrews [Smile]
by afgreyparrot on May 02, 2004 04:53 AM
Well, I've about come to the conclusion that the holes are from boring old grubs. I was really hoping for something more exciting. Shrews would have been awesome! But, dug a hole up yesterday and found a big, fat 2 inch long grub in it.
BORING!!!

Aliens would have been AWESOME!!!!!

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by Phil and Laura on May 02, 2004 03:46 PM
What kinda FOOT PRINT did those GRUBS leave CINDY?? [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin] [Big Grin]
by afgreyparrot on May 02, 2004 05:36 PM
VERY FUNNY!!!!!

Well, it entertained you for awhile, now didn't it? [Big Grin]

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by weezie13 on May 02, 2004 08:07 PM
[Big Grin] [Big Grin] [thumb]

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by Jiffymouse on May 02, 2004 10:13 PM
[Big Grin] [Big Grin] [thumb] kept him entertained, but you know what they say about the ease of entertaining innocents!

and cindy, think of all the "free" bird food you are getting!!
by Phil and Laura on May 02, 2004 11:38 PM
Me...INNOCENT...Oh Yeah! [angel] , or is that like saying Im a ...complicated individual,ecentric, addle(sp) minded or that old line, he was a quiet man, he never bothered anyone [thinker] [nutz]
by epiphany on May 09, 2004 10:24 PM
quote:
Originally posted by The Plant Doc:
Sounds like you could have shrews,
Sometime during the past week, dozens of holes were created in my yard. Each is about the size of a half-dollar. There is a small amount of dirt mounds around a few of them, and a couple of them have dried grass around the hole, sort of like a bird nest. I've never seen a shrew here, but nothing would surprise me--we've had everything from wild rabbits to a bobcat last summer to a roadrunner in that yard.

I have noticed a couple of toads by the patio--as far as I know they are still there (under flower pots).
I have a cat who goes out during the night mostly, and she will kill anything that moves (or else just wound it and bring it into the house for me to throw out). I would have thought that if the holes were being made by shrews, she would have killed one.

As I said, they seem to have appeared in a little over a week's time, and there are at least a couple of dozen or more, all about the same size.

How can I find out for sure if it's shrews? Forget digging the hole area up--no way am I gonna do that. Any way to find out from a safe distance, other than the flour trick? It's the rainy season here, and any flour I put down will be paste by the next day.

Thanks for any advice...great website!
by afgreyparrot on May 10, 2004 02:17 AM
Instead of having dime to quarter size holes all over my yard, which NO ONE noticed except me, I now have SHOVEL size holes all over my yard!!! Whatever is making the holes is not destroying my yard, they are making ME destroy it!!!
AND THERE'S NOTHING IN THE HOLES!!!!!

I'm beginning to think this is some kind of conspiracy. Andy probably goes out there at night with a cordless drill just to try to PUSH ME OVER THE EDGE!!!!!

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Buckle up! It makes it harder for the aliens to suck you out of your car!
by Jiffymouse on May 10, 2004 02:48 AM
[Big Grin] [Big Grin] he wouldn't have time to do that. but i have thought that my hubby would do something like that too! [Big Grin] [Big Grin]
by apples on May 20, 2004 12:09 PM
[thumb]
I'm glad to hear you found the problem, I've been gone for a while so I was just reading back to see if you had that web cam set up yet [Big Grin]
I was kind of hoping for aliens too [dunno]

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The answers will come when needed. Otherwise, I'm guesing time will make me feel silly.

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