It took me a long time to catch the culprit, as there were several squirrels around and the fruit-nibbler was also the most wily. Plus my squirrel trap disappeared one night, whether taken by two-legged or four-legged vermin I don't know. I imagine squirrel trapping probably upsets some of my neighbours (particularly when they devote quite a large proportion of their income to feeding both them and the local rat population) but the losses they inflict on fruit are unacceptable, and it would be completely impractical to cage a quarter of an acre. The damage stopped immediately with the removal of the last squirrel.
Wednesday, 21 July 2010
This has been an awful year for squirrel damage, with significant losses on some varieties. All the apples on the Worcester Pearmain were removed or damaged, the blighter then moved further up the garden to the pear cordons. Worst affected was Winter Nellis, where 2/3rds of the crop were nibbled and subsequently lost to brown rot. Nearly as bad was Devoe, where very few of the fruits escaped being bitten. Some bite marks will heal and go corky as with scab damage, but I doubt they will keep well.