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Old May 2, 2008   #1
organichris
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Default What kind of animal nibbles on a tomato plant?

Something has been nibbling on one of my tomato plants. I'm quite confident that it isn't an insect. It has to be an animal. I would guess a rabbit, although I thought rabbits didn't eat tomato plants. I'm about ready to bust out the old sling shot and kill some rabbits. They make for pretty decent stew.

I went out one day and noticed one of the biggest leaves had been removed. About three days later the leaf on the opposite side had also been removed. Is it a rabbit or something else?
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Old May 2, 2008   #2
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Oh yeah, and I put some blood meal around the plant. Hopefully that will deter the rabbit or whatever...or not.
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Old May 2, 2008   #3
barkeater
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Deer nibble on fresh transplants. They've also yanked them out of the ground and thrown them around.
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Old May 2, 2008   #4
bonekittyslug
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Never seen rabbits eat tomato plants...yet...

However, one year about 3 days after I plants about two dozen mater plants...I went to look... nothing but 4 inch green sticks left.

Later I saw the culprit...
Groundhog!!!!!

Got some rabbit fencing...no more problem from him.
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Old May 2, 2008   #5
organichris
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I really don't think it is a deer. It was nibbled on really close to the ground, and I don't think we have groundhogs around here. And presumably a deer or a groundhog would have eaten the whole plant or most of it. I'm baffled. I will probably take it out on the rabbits if I get a chance. I'm not kidding either. I will eat them and put their decapitated heads near my plants so their homies get the message. You know, "This is a message from Don Corleone" style.
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Old May 2, 2008   #6
Hilde
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Could it be a rat, a mouse or a vole?
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Old May 2, 2008   #7
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I had a field mouse nibble on mine in my shed -

~ Tom
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Old May 2, 2008   #8
organichris
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I hadn't though about mice and rats. That's a definite possibility. I'm not going to eat any rats.
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Old May 2, 2008   #9
Hilde
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Quote:
Originally Posted by organichris View Post
I hadn't though about mice and rats. That's a definite possibility. I'm not going to eat any rats.
You just eat mice? How do you like them? Do you grill them whole, like rotisserie chicken?
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Old May 2, 2008   #10
organichris
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Well, I have eaten squirrel. That's the closest thing to a rat or a mouse I would even think about eating. Besides, mice don't have enough meat on them.
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Old May 2, 2008   #11
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Mice, Rats, Squirrels, Rabbets, Beavers, Ground Hogs and many other critters are all part of the rodent family.
If they don't chew on something there teeth will continue to grow.

Some such as the Rabbet chew a cud like a cow.

As far as I'm concerned they are all tasty if you go without food for about 3 days.
I had rather eat a big rat than eat a nasty old alligator.

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Old May 2, 2008   #12
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Not much meat, but it sure is tender!
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Old May 2, 2008   #13
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Squirrel is a fine tasting critter. Don't cook it where it will dry out, as then you might as well eat a shoe. What about pill or sow bugs aka rollie-pollie bugs? They sometimes try to eat the lower leaves near the ground. I just break those off, and they stop, as they can't reach the others.

If you have these, take some crushed red pepper and make a ring around the plant. I did this to my squash this year and haven't had a problem.
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Old May 2, 2008   #14
organichris
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The reason I don't think its a deer is because with the way the cage is situated it would be really hard for a deer to have gotten access where the leaf was removed. Plus I would have seen deer tracks. I'm thinking it was a mouse or a rat. If so that blood meal will probably only attract them.

And yes, as creister said, squirrel is a fine tasting critter. They taste best when fried.
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Old May 2, 2008   #15
creister
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Actually, Rabbits are Lagomorph's, that is the have to eat, crap, then eat the crap to get all of the nutrition from the forage. They are almost as good to eat as a squirrel. Squirrel and dumplings, or we always browned them, then simmered in garlic, onioins, white wine, and salt and pepper until it falls off the bone. Make gravey from wine mixture, mashed potatoes and salad.
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