Small holes near my pond

sassy7142(z5 OHIO)September 10, 2007

I don't know what I have....

I've never seen holes in my hosta beds, but there's an area near my pond that has holes in the ground.

Perfectly round holes.

I thought what the heck...so last night I set out 6 mouse traps with peanut butter as bait.

Just checked the traps...and of all things.. there was a front leg of a crayfish in the trap.

What's with that?

I don't see any mounds of dirt anywhere....just those perfectly round holes about 1.5 in in diameter.

What do you think?

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wyldflower

Do you have skunks in your area? We've seen a big increase this year, and we have similar round holes; my understanding is that the skunks are digging the holes to search for grubs. They only come out at night.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 12:12PM
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esther_opal

Crawfish for sure.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 12:37PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

wyldflower, I used to have a pet skunk. Sweetest little guy, at least to me. Lived to be 8.5 yrs, but died of cancer. Back to your question...I don't know, I haven't smelled any lately. lol. I never catch any skunk in the Havahart trap. Lots of coons, (57 in 3 years), but no skunks.

EO, Crawfish make holes? Perfectly round holes? I didn't even know there were crawfish in my pond. I was surprised to see that front leg in the mouse trap. Guess what??
Crawfish like peanut butter. lol

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 1:03PM
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bunnycat(z6 NY)

57 raccoons?????????????????? Do you live near a raccoon zoo? Yikes!

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 1:44PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Bunnycat, Yes, that's right. We've trapped 57 raccoons in less than 3 yrs! They have gotten in our attic, torn up our garage, leave muddy paw prints all over our deck, tear up my potted flowers, etc.
We are totally overrun with them here. There used to be a lot of coon hunters around here, but since PETA made it a "sin" to wear a fur coat... the price of a pelt was worth nothing. No more coon hunters around here, hence I have a
coon problem. Once I counted 8 roadkill coons just on my way to work. I have small toy breed dogs and fear that a coon will get them someday when we let them out to potty.
The county won't help us..I begged them to take the coons after I trap them and keep them in a pen till they get there....NOPE. So...let's see.. it's illegal to kill them unless it's hunting season, and the county won't take them for me once they're caught. What'll do? We haul them away and they're probably starving or getting trapped by some other homeowner who is now overrun by them. Thanks PETA! You really did the raccoons a big favor.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 2:19PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

cover your traps with a big black plastic pot.. to catch what might come out of the hole.. instead of something that wanders by .... like kids.. dogs.. cats .... etc ...

ken

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 2:58PM
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esther_opal

Yes, crawfish make holes just as you describe. As kid I dug trying to get to the bottom of the hole and catch one. I gave up after about 3 ft, never did find the bottom of the hole.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2007 at 3:25PM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Here's a couple of pics of these holes. There are about a doz of them anywhere from 1' to 6' from the pond.
Crawfish, not voles?

Ken, Your right, I need to put pots over the traps.

The first pic shows 2 holes.


    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 3:42AM
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newhostaaddict

i vote for chippies...

get a bigger trap...

jill

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 8:53AM
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aahostas(z5 central Il.)

I have crayfish holes near my pond and even in the landscaping by the pool. The holes pictured look like theirs but..they usually make a mud piled mound around the hole. Maybe they can't this summer due to the lack of water to make the mud! We catch them with a hook and worm at the end of a fishing line that we wrap around our hand. They don't want to let go of the worm and one can usually pull them right out of the hole! (I knew my Hillbilly upbringing might be usefull someday!!!)

Denny

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 9:33AM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

Chipmunks....they take the dirt away from the hole as they dig it.
They won't eat your plants if they aren't thirsty and being near the pond, I guess there is lots of water.
They're cute little creatures....don't trap them!
Linda C

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 10:22AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

in my experience... chippies.. must die ... at least reduction of population enough to avoid the damage ... my yard isnt a disney production .... and i dont believe in live trapping of vermin, and releasing them to become someone elses problem ....

they are territorial ... i have never seen more than one hole within 10 feet of another hole.. ergo .. i think she has too many holes in close proximity ... for a chippie diagnosis ....

i know nothing about crayfish ... except i think you can eat them ...

i think she already got her answer with the claw she trapped.. but recommend further testing with pots... to see what is coming out of the hole rather than walking by the hole....

ken

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 10:41AM
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newhostaaddict

fishing for crayfish sounds like fun....

and....chippies are 'cute'...but 'oh' the 'damage' they can do....

jill

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 11:41AM
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sassy7142(z5 OHIO)

Denny, Interesting....What do you do with them after
you catch them?
Or better yet...Why do you catch them?
Do they do harm to anything that I should know aboout?
Yea, I have a whole lot of Hillbilly upbringing in me too. LOL
Aren't crayfish called "Crawldads" or something like that?

Jill, I just don't think that they're Chippies...
haven't seen one in over 20 yrars.
They were too slow and the cats got em all.
Yes, I also heard that they do alot of damage.

Ken, I hear you about not releasing them....but
here's my problem...I had a pet raccoon, "Rambo"
He was a wonderful pet and I loved him very much.
Had him 17.5 yrs till he died of old age.
Now, every coon I see reminds me of "Rambo"
and because of that I can't let my hubby shoot any
of the trapped ones.
Been a few loud discussions between us over the subject, usually I win, but not always.
Never shoots them when I'm home....
quieter if he doesn't, if you know what I mean.

So, they're not voles, moles or shrews?

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 12:46PM
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aahostas(z5 central Il.)

Sassy
We would usually let them loose by the "crick" It was a hoot to watch them run backwards into the water.We called them "Crawdaddies" and I still think this personifies them more than "Crayfish". The only real harm that they would cause is when the mower would hit their little mud piles when we mowed the ditches. We caught them mostly out of boredom though.Some folks use them as catfish or turtle bait but to get the quantity for a long fishing trip one would be better off to sein a slew with an old curtain.
We also had a pet raccoon named Bandit. He was really cute until he got the mating call and then he went nuts!My brother had to get the stomach shots for rabies because Bandit bit him before he headed off into the wild blue yonder!! We use to give him sugar cubes and watch them dissapear as he washed them! See I told you that we were bored!!!
Denny

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 2:16PM
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iowa_flower_nut(5)

Denny,
Sounds like you must not be far from here because we grew up playing by the "crick" catching crawdaddies and fishing for bullheads!
Did your Mom tell you to "warsh" your hands instead of "wash" them too? LOL!

    Bookmark   September 11, 2007 at 6:14PM
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aahostas(z5 central Il.)

I.F.N.,
She sure did! She would holler,"Git yer hands warshed fer vittles!" Wow, I had forgotten this ,Thanks for the memories!!LOL!
Denny

    Bookmark   September 12, 2007 at 8:09PM
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yardmom

How in the world do chipmunks take the dirt away from the holes and why?
We don't have chipmunks where I live.

    Bookmark   September 12, 2007 at 9:15PM
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ofionnachta(z6 WNJ)

You guys crack me up with all this chippie & crawdaddy talk! : -- )
My husb grew up in Buffalo NY & they "worsh up" there, too! He still worshes things, been living in NJ almost 30 year.
I grew up on the NJ shore & those arthropods are crawdads if you are a kid & crawfish if a grownup. I used to think they should have been called "clawfish" they nipped you on the toes if you were wading.
We had raccoons in our trash cans some years ago--solved the problem by emptying the cans out, keeping the trash in bags in our basement for a week--and meanwhile scrubbing the bejabbers out of the cans with strong bleach solution. Then we turned the cans on their sides to dry & left them stinking of bleach & empty, for our "guests" to inspect.
We've never had the problem since so I guess they moved on to the neighbors.
We also have way fewer raccoons around here than we used to, since rabies ran through the population -- spent a few years with raccoons staggering all over the place in daylight, then they disappeared.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2007 at 11:35AM
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aahostas(z5 central Il.)

Wow!
You are right "Clawdaddies" would be a perfect name for them! Those staggering coons sound like a Steven King movie called "Rabid" or "Killer Coons' or "Rocky's Revenge"
I am going to tell my once bitten brother about your post to watch him go into a nervous quiver!!!

Denny

    Bookmark   September 15, 2007 at 9:35AM
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