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Last Updated: Saturday, 15 September 2007, 15:27 GMT 16:27 UK
Duck patrol called in for slugs
Slug (generic)
Gardeners say slugs have benefitted from the wet summer
A group of ducks has been introduced to a visitors' attraction in the Black Country to deal with its slug problem.

Officials at Sandwell Park Farm said this summer's wet weather had led to a large increase in the garden pests.

To deal with the infestation they have brought in the group of feathered exterminators from the farm to save the attraction's Victorian kitchen garden.

Gardeners said they wanted to use a more environmentally-friendly solution to slug pellets.

Serious effect

The restored 18th Century farm was originally built to supply food throughout the year to the Earl of Dartmouth's estate and Sandwell Hall.

Senior countryside officer Malcolm Freeman said: "Many gardeners have turned to using slug pellets to control them, but these have a serious effect on birds and other wildlife and damage our environment.

"At Sandwell Park Farm we have enlisted the help of some of our farm inhabitants to save our crops from the slugs.

"Not only are the vegetable crops flourishing, but the ducks are thriving on their new diet and enjoying living in their new surroundings."

Is the UK facing a slug plague?
22 Aug 07 |  Magazine

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