Dealing with Critters in the Garden

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When I built my garden, I had to make sure that certain critters wouldn’t be able to destroy my hard gardening work.  I made sure the picket fence around the yard had chicken wire fencing dug deep into the ground so small animals wouldn’t get in and eat all my beans and lettuce.

So, we made sure it was critter-proof.

And then a mamma rabbit got in and gave birth to 5 babies.

At first I was angry…and then I remembered that I was a mamma.  What if I needed to give birth and needed to find a safe shelter to protect my new family? What if I found the perfect place but it was locked?  To protect my family, wouldn’t I break in if I had no other choice?

I know, I know…I have adopted a Disney mentality.   But, you have to admit, they are cute!

So, every day, I watch mamma bunny scatter out of her new-found hole in my garden and I go in to pick my daily produce and check up on her babies…



Look at their little tails …omg…

As I look around my home, I realize that all of these animals keep me company all summer long (and even into the late fall as the cool air begins to set in).  It’s my outdoor Ipod …  I love it!

Here are some other critters that are part of my summer…




A bird comes back every year to have babies in a nest that is perched high up above my entrance (I’m pretty sure it’s a barn swallow because an old Italian carpenter that was building our house noticed it and refused to finish the work outside until the mother gave birth because he said it was bad luck to disrupt them).  I love watching her fly back and forth to get food and how the babies perch their little heads over the edge looking for her to come back.  When they are big enough to try flying, they sometimes just sit on the ground under my bench and rest until their little wings have enough energy to give it another shot (this one was too puffy!!)




This was yesterday.  I was having a coffee and I noticed a baby deer just hangin’ in my back yard.  I snapped this picture but by the time I ran outside to get a close up, he was running into the forest beside us…




There are about 50-80 Canada geese on my lawn every day.  You would think that with all that goose poop, I would have the greenest grass in Ontario…but, nope.

At first it’s cute…you kinda feel partriotic.  Then they have babies and there are loads of them.  It’s still kinda cute to see them grow and watch how the “parents” protect them.

Then you realize how much “fertilizer” 80 geese can make…ughhhh.




Then there’s the swans.  They are actually stunning creatures.  Every year, these 2 fly to our lake and stay all summer long.  But this year we have 22…yes, 22 swans.  More beauty, right.

Sure, until you realize they like to hang out on the dock (see above picture)…more poop…



I’m not sure what these birds are called (I Googled it and it said they were cliff swallows).  An old Italian man (same carpenter as before…apparently was a bird whisperer in his last life) told me not to get rid of them because they eat mosquitoes.  They do make a beautiful sound when they chirp and, although they fly low, they never bother me when I’m around.  The only problem is that last year, I looked at these 2 nests and didn’t want to take them down because it looked like so much work to build them.  But, they must have gone and told their bird friends that there is a “crazy bird lady that leaves our nest up all year long”….their friends came…now their are 9 nests…crazy bird lady indeed.

Moral of the story?  Enjoy your summer, creatures and all.  They are around for a reason – maybe to eat mosquitoes, maybe to fertilize your lawn or maybe just because you are a gentle soul and they need you to be their safe haven while they create new life.