Monthly Archives: April 2014

Barn Owls can hear your heart beating.

 

photo copy Barn Owls are declining because of habitat loss and rodent poisoning. 

This Barn Owl could hear my heart beating.

The Barn Owl has excellent low-light vision, but its ability to locate prey by sound alone is the best of any animal that has ever been tested. It can catch mice in complete darkness in the lab, or hidden by vegetation or snow out in the real world. 

A barn owl will eat at least 10,000 rodents a year. For every owl that dies prematurely from poisoned rodents, 10,000 extra rodents are free to multiply.

If we don’t want the rat population to explode we must STOP USING RAT POISONS.

All poisons kill the predators as well as the “so called pest.” In the long run your problem becomes harder to manage.

The food chain if allowed to thrive will keep the balance.

As we always say, “No Poison Is Safe.”

Nitrogen Fixers

IMG_3423

At the root of this fava bean plant are nitrogen nodules. This plant along with the peas, Barley, and fetch that are also growing behind me take nitrogen out of the air and fix it to the roots. 2 months ago this hillside was full of weeds. We dug 2 shovels deep into the soil, turned it and then put a mixture of premium soil builder cover crop. Continue reading Nitrogen Fixers

Snails and Sluggs

Grapevinesnail_01

Our constant mantra is that no poison is safe. Read the info here

Sluggo also kills earth worms.

A man-made chemical called EDTA, a chelating agent that causes the iron phosphate to release its elemental iron easily in the digestive systems of not only slugs and snails but of pretty much anything that eats it, children and pets and earth worms. EDTA or the similar EDDS are the only reason these baits are effective, yet interestingly the label only reads Active Ingredient: Iron Phosphate – 1%, Inert Ingredients – 99%. No mention is made of the presence of another chemical that can turn harmless iron phosphate into a deadly poison. Apparently EDTA was slipped through the cracks in our regulatory system as an “inert” ingredient, and inert ingredients do not have to be listed on the label. Since iron phosphate is harmless, and EDTA is the ingredient that makes it effective, not to mention dangerous.

A review of these products by the Swiss organic certification organization (FiBL) discovered the EDTA content and stated that these products were likely no safer than the metaldehyde baits, that EDTA itself was significantly more poisonous than metaldehyde, and even said they weren’t even sure that it wasn’t the EDTA alone that was killing slugs and snails.

The best solution I have found is to gather the snails in the evening or early morning. They like to hide in tall grasses or foliage so look for them there and reduce unnecessary tall foliage. Right after watering, during a rain and the early morning dew are easy times to find them wandering about. You also can place them in your compost pile because they love eating the old food. Rats, crows, ducks and chickens love  to eat them. We also feed our snails to our koi fish in our pond. Collecting them for 7 days in a row seems to be the quickest way to bring down their numbers. Continue once a month your snail population will significantly come down.