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Slug pellets should we?

15 comments


I recently mentioned I was going to use the pellets in my Greeenhouse where they were safe from pets or kiddies, but since then I am wondering if we should subject another living creature ,be it only Slug or Snail to what must be an apalling death. In future I will try trapping them , damp paper, torchlight , pieces of ledttuce or other attractant, picking them up and taking them to waste land or nearby field. I have read that they will return over quite long distances but dont believe it. However a spot of paint on each shell might be worth testing. The thing is , where do you draw the line at killing another living creature? Or if you have too, then let it be quick like stepping on it.

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Comments

 

i know what your talking about poaannua, i go snail and slug hunting every evening, seems to be no end to them , i dont kill them , i put them in my wheelie bins and off they go on an adventure every week lol

8 Aug, 2008

 

Hi Irish. Yes I do that when I find the Snails hiding under plastic pot holders, Slugs go on the Compost heap, which is far from the endangered plants. lol

9 Aug, 2008

 

I really have to harden my heart when dealing with 'critters' in the garden. I tend my plants, buy new ones, grow new ones from seed and cuttings - what for? To make my garden look good, not to feed slugs and snails - and yesterday, just to make matters worse, my second batch of Cleomes was invaded by lots and lots of tiny caterpillars all munching away. The first lot were completely eaten by snails! I spent ages picking them off! Yes, I do see your point, but have to protect my garden. The slugs, snails etc are welcome to live in the brambles and nettles of the field over the fence and leave me alone!

9 Aug, 2008

 

lol you should put up wee notices for them Spritz saying do not enter.......
my cabbage is just shredded out there now, full of caterpillars , ive sown more winter cabbage this week, ill really need to keep an eye on this lot tho

9 Aug, 2008

 

Slugs and snails. I think I have the worlds population of butterflies laying eggs in my garden. Caterpillars everywhere. Slugs no so much of a problem as there are plenty of Frogs and Hedgehogs about, but caterpillars!
Where are all the birds?

9 Aug, 2008

 

I agree with Spritz, and Iv'e tried all sorts of remedies to eradicate slugs and snails without real success, so now I use wildlife friendly snail pellets.Our Hostas and other tender plants would be well and truly shredded if we left them unprotected. We have frogs and toads in the garden and they do a good job as well, so we have to be careful not to harm them.We have tried beer traps, grit, copper bands, garlic, etc etc .Someone who visited the garden recently mentioned that human hair is a deterrant, but I really couldn't imagine leaving my curly locks lying around my garden to ward off slugs and snails, so, until research comes up with another alternative I'm going to stick with slug and snail pellets!

9 Aug, 2008

 

Hi Poaannua, I don't kill them -I just can't. We have plenty of frogs and the odd hedgehog so the problem is not too bad but I'd rather put up with some damage than resort to pellets.

9 Aug, 2008

 

Hi Poaannua. All creatures great and small....well, would you kill a malaria mosquito? I would! Insects can be a pest and I have killed many in my life and hubby in the orchard and vineyard even more. But yes, we need to attract birds in our gardens, but would honey eaters eat snails and slugs as well? There is a link missing in gardens where slugs are, not so much in Popeymike's garden. He might have a pond, where frogs congregate and eat those slugs in the process. I even kill the dangerous and evil to our wildlife canetoad and he is at least 30-100 times the size of a snail. I would never use snail pellets, not even the friendly to wildlife ones. There is wildlife which has the same size as slugs, so those will be knocked off anyway. I have known a dog who nearly died at the vets cause he had eaten from a packet of pellets. So yes, dispose of that packet sensibly.
I cannot see the difference of snails in a wheely bin or just stepping on them and leaving them out for the birds. Both ways it will end up dead. Only in the wheely bin it will be more traumatic, it will take longer. I would opt for the first method, because the birds will have a feast. Poaannua, why not invest in a couple of ducks in your garden? They will gladly rid you of all your snails! Good luck.

9 Aug, 2008

 

Popeymike, I wouldn't mind if it were just a little damage, as you put it, but when one of my plants has been totally destroyed FOUR times by snails (my Clematis) then I have to think of how to protect it. I have gone for the friendly option this time., you'll be pleased to hear! I bought three large bottles of water and we cut the tops and bottoms off and slit them up the side. I have placed these round the base of the gobbled one and also two new ones (I refused to plant these until I found a solution!) Mrs Chomondeley - Clematis no. 1 - is happily sprouting from her roots inside her bottle. Next problem to be solved - how to support her when she emerges from the top? It can't be a cane - that's how the snail got up to her - so I have to think ingeniously and come up with a fiendish plan.... Watch this space! Marguerite - I'd love to have ducks but Henry would make their lives H**L. Irish - what a good idea - but I can't see myself giving reading lessons to a line of eager snails, can you? LOL.

9 Aug, 2008

 

This is a very interesting Blog, and its fascinating to read all the responses and differing views.

The big problem here in the inner city is that we rarely (and sadly) have birds visiting our garden despite all our valiant attempts to attract them, so the birds are not helping to keep our slug and snail population down.It would be wonderful to see more birds in our inner cities.

There are seagulls because we are a city port, but they do not venture into the garden as its too enclosed, and we also have masses of pigeons but that's more or less the limit of our bird population!

We have our frogs and toads, and they are rather fat, and are obviously doing well.The bird populations in our cities in the U.K has dramatically diminished over the years, and I have seen a massive decline in the bird population here since my childhood.

Unfortunately we do not see any hedgehogs either or other natural predators.

So we were faced with a big problem---- and we sought the advice from a professional horticulturist, and we followed the advice and started to use the wildlife friendly pellets, only because we had tried all other reasonable and humane methods to eradicate them.

We also pick them off the plants when we see them.

It's very interesting because the most frequently asked question when our garden is open to the public is: 'How do you stop snails and slugs from damaging your plants?'
It's also fascinating to hear the diverse methods of eradication and prevention that are used by some of our garden visitors as well, but we have not seen or heard a failsafe soution yet, and I doubt there ever will be one.

If snails or slugs were to be listed as an 'endangered species' I would certainly change my views and approach, but we have invested a lot of time, energy and money on garden plants and I want to protect them as best I can.

And so the problem continues of what to do with slugs and snails, and the debate continues......

9 Aug, 2008

 

I'm glad my blog has caused so much discussion, They are such a problem, and we do have to harden our hearts at times. I have made several benches where I can place young plants to harden up , but even then they sometimes manage to find a way in.
I like the Dustbin idea and somrtimes do that myself, also sometimes take the collected victims on to the road and let them take their chance of survival.
Telling them "Life's a gamble"

9 Aug, 2008

 

Found it interesting Granville re bird bit, I have regular pigeons that visit my garden, hear seagulls and have a black bird and the odd sparrow. My attempts with exotic bird food seem to have gone unnoticed. No chaffinches in my garden. I have grown bushes and trees and put down grubs (dried as per garden programme recomendation). I do have frogs, which do a bit I think, not sure how many I have! But have also used some pellets enviro friendly supposedly. And plastic bottles, seem to be good to a certain degree. The other day did a 12 egg cake so had lots of egg shells so have tried that, seems a bit more effective than the odd one or two I have used before. I put the slugs in the compost, feel good for them there,but equally bad when a scrunch goes at night wehn I walk down the path, also must admit to bunge jumping the snails across the neighbours who have nothing but wasteland in their garden. I too pulled up a whole lot of pak choi and cabbages due to damage. And yes certainly would kill a mosquito!!!! No hedgehogs as no way in, and in city area so...
This subject is better than the weather ahh lol

9 Aug, 2008

 

Interesting comments. I understand the frustrations of losing plants you have nurtured from seed- its happened to me. Fortunately we still have a healthy bird population around here and I don't feel I need to go down the chemical route, but I sympathise with those who do. It was the late great Geoff Hamilton who convinced me to be 100% organic and I still find his books inspirational. Oh and by the way- isn't this site just going from strength to strength?!

10 Aug, 2008

 

Hi Mike,
Try to persuade some birds to divert and fly to Bristol to help us out!
It really is a big problem as the bird popution has dramatically diminished- but pigeons are still so prolific and they are not helping the situation.

We would love to stop using the slug pellests and let nature take over, but for now it's the only solution.We also feel guilty about having to use the slug and snail pellets albeit the wildlife friendly ones......

Luckily our frogs and toad are doing a good job, but I'm sure they can't cope with the volume of snails and slugs at the moment.

The problem has been made even worse this year with the dreadful wet weather we are having here in Bristol.It's been lashing with rain again this morning ---real heavy downpours and high winds. I think we must be having the wettest summer on record here in this part of the U.K!

10 Aug, 2008

 

If neighbours put down slug pellets which are not wildlife-friendly, are the birds going to be killed after they eat the pellets, or also if they eat the slugs and snails which have eaten the pellets? I fear it's bad news for the birds in both instances.

What do you think?

20 Aug, 2008

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