We have a mid-sized wood deck out in our back yard, under which appears to be visiting/living some kind of … something? We've fenced the whole yard pretty good, so bunnies can't get in. (no really, they can't.) Anyone coming to our yard has to climb the 7foot tall wood fence. As of last week, there are piles of poo on our pine-needle mulched bedding plants. The poo is the size of a D battery and is composed entirely of birdseed. Finally, the deck shows a path of egress through one corner under the stairs where the grass is beaten down.
So: What's big enough to beat down our grass at the deck, lives under a deck, has giant battery-sized birdseed poo, and climbs fences to get in and out of our yard? Are we looking at raccoons here? (OH NO!)
Opossums? (Oh just kill me now?)
Bear in mind, we're at the south edge of our sunny little neighborhood and it's super dry and un-foresty. We don't have a lot of neighbor dogs (all Chihuahua-sized) and the whole area is backed against a broad grassy plain that shoots for miles behind us. (Coyotes and groundhogs are thriving back there.) We haven’t noticed any trash-can mischief, we keep all seed and trash locked tight in the garage at night and have noticed no infiltration there. Most activity seems to be at night, when kitty races from window to window to get a better view of whatever it is that’s lurking out there (we haven’t seen anything but neighborhood cats on the fence lines). Kitty is strictly indoor-only, and the only open windows (screened) she has access to are on the second story… but still… I’m a little freaked about what she’s being exposed to.
I’m really unnerved about finding more parasite-potential in the yard and I’m terrified that there’s some toothy nightmare under our deck who’s eager to pick up residence in our basement or attic.
My husband thought it was cat poo – but cats don’t eat bird seed and our 10lb cat doesn’t poo nearly that big. Or… robustly.
The pest control dude called me back and was very grandfatherly and soothing.
"sounds like raccoons" he said. So I'm running with that and am looking forward to trying his suggestions for home remedies that we can try before we call in the team of space-suited professionals to remove these verminious demons for us.
1) hose down the under-deck area at the beginning and end of every day, just as the sun is setting, to make it sloppy and gooey and very unpleasant for napping in.
2) leave a shop light on under the deck to hyper-illuminate the space under there to make it far too bright for any cozy, sleepy nesting action.
3) (co-worker suggestion) use ammonia.
Failing that, we call in the suits. (I'm envisioning something like the yellow hazmat dudes from the monsters, inc movie) AND the suits can be called upon for bidding on getting the under-deck area up to code and up to snuff concerning keeping future verminious demonic presences out. (I'm envisioning acres of deeply buried hardware "fabric" teeny grid wire mesh like we did for the rabbits, a heavy pruning of the honeysuckle, and some holy water.)
Failing that, we'll need some explosives, nailguns, welding masks and a timelord.Here's hoping numbers 1 and 2 are all we need to do. For the poo-places, I'd like to request some fresh pine needles to make it extra stabby. Maybe some good old fashioned broken glass and used syringes in there too. For the inevitable, innumerable and unimaginably ghastly parasites lodged in the poo places, I'd like to request that the gods send forth some extremely localized scorched-earth action across an acre-age roughly two square feet across. Do they do that? No? *sigh* Probably I will just end up bagging up the old mulch in that area and just leaving it alone until fresh mulch-ery can come in.
Note to self: must find N905 dust mask to go under welding mask. And falconry gloves to go under the acid-resistant black gloves.
Must now go wash hands again, just thinking about it. Gack gack gack gack gack.Can NOT wait to add this toothsome plague-bearer to our "absent" list.