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Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Creepy Crawlies, Slugs, Snails and Spiders

What are little boys made of?

What are little boys made of?
What are little boys made of?
 
Slugs and snails
And puppy-dogs' tails,
 
That's what little boys are made of.
What are little girls made of?
What are little girls made of?
Sugar and spice
And everything nice,
That's what little girls are made of.
(with thanks to Wikipedia)
Leopard slug
 

Leopard Slugs

Slugs and snails have been plentiful in my gardens over the years. The slug pictured above is called a Leopard slug because of the markings on its body and head. I first saw these slugs when they would visit the area where my little dog was fed each night. Ruby was a black and tan Australian Terrier.
 
Ruby, our little Australian terrier
 
These slugs lived under and around Ruby's kennel in the garden.
 
Dear, difficult little Ruby is no longer with us but we still have her kennel. It was put to use recently as a little coop for some chickens and their mother. They stayed warm and cosy in there.
 
However, one evening when I was feeding the chicks I saw one of these slugs again. Oh, so you are still around, I thought.
 
After the chicks moved out to a new and larger home, I turned the kennel over and found some Leopard slugs living under it.
 
Late last night, about 11.30pm, I was on my way to bed and decided to check on the chicks as it was drizzling rain. As I went outside with my little LED torch, there were three leopard slugs heading for the new chicken shed, charging across the damp grass.
 
These slugs were about 8-10cm long (3-4in). They can reach up to 20cm (8in) in length.
 
So today the kennel was removed further down the yard. It was turned on its side and the last I saw, our two fluffy silkie hens were eyeing off all the spiders, snails and slugs on its base.
 
When I went down the yard to put the hens away this evening, all the creatures were gone from the kennel.