It rained all last night so my big plan to get on with some weeding in the garden flew out the window. Pulling weeds out of mud is never fun! Instead I decided to make another garden in the tunnel house and fill it with some peas and lettuces and a couple of rows of spinach and radishes thrown in for good measure. The other gardens are going so well I'm hoping this one will too.
When I make the new "gardens" I fill the boxes with lots and lots of delicious leaf mould that has been maturing over the past year or so. It appears that the leaf mould is the perfect breeding ground for stag beetle larvae. With every scoop of leaf mould there seem to be at least 3 or 4 larvae curled up ready for metamorphosis in spring. I have no idea if they would do anything bad to the seedlings, but just to be on the safe side I try to remove as many of them as I can - some of which are rather large!
I try not to waste things so the larvae get taken to the chickens, who seem to be able to smell them coming and go into a real frenzy. The largest ones are usually left till last, but within a matter of minutes they are all polished off. I'm presuming the stag beetle isn't on the endangered population list.... otherwise my chickens may need to be arrested!