As you may know, I have been battling some sort of rodent in my compost for awhile now. Small mice were living in my black stacked compost bin a few months ago so I took apart my bin to make an open air pile (taking apart my bin involved a lot of screaming from me and the mice and play out in a similar fashion to this earlier episode). So I thought taking my bin apart was going to allow me to turn the compost more often and discourage the mice from living there. I didn’t see any more mice, however each time I went out to put some new scraps into the compost I noticed large tunnels into the compost. Like tennis ball size… One tunnel even went under my compost, under my DG path and up into my raised bed! I tried to do some research about mice tunneling but I didn’t come up with much, plus these tunnels were huge. Every time I went to my compost I would just cover the holes and hope this would discourage whatever was making them.
About a week ago, I went to take out the compost and in the very corner was the largest rat I had ever seen. I almost thought it was an opossum it was so big! Unfortunately for this guy, he was looking rather poor and definitely on his final breaths. He didn’t even try to move away from me. He died right there next to a kale stalk and a spent pepper plant.
Well, even though he lost that battle, I am done battling the rodents! Enter my new solution: a 50 gallon tumbling composter!
Isn’t it beautiful?
My plan is to put all my kitchen scraps in this bad boy so I wont attract any rodents and then when it is partially decomposed I will move the contents into my open air pile. I think this will be a good system going forward.
And since the death of my rat friend… no more tunnels!