Thursday 11 November 2010

Big bugs beat the birds

I hauled out the sweetcorn today and dug over the bed, disturbing a colony of chafer grubs in the process. These are the fat white grubs with a brown head and six little legs up at the head end. They are disconcertingly big - approaching the size of my little finger - and voracious eaters. Apparently they are particularly fond of potato roots, which is not good news since this year's sweetcorn bed is meant to be next year's potato bed.

I removed each one from the soil, placed them on a flat gravel board, and waited for the tame robin who follows me and my garden fork around the allotment. He was along in a couple of minutes and homed in on the beached chafer grubs, picking one up in his beak and hopping off. When I next glanced his way, he was still clutching the grub and shaking his head from side to side as if wondering what to do with it. Then he seemed to give the whole thing up, dropped the chafer grub on the ground and flew away.

I need some bigger birds. 

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