Saturday, 6 March 2010

Captured! The thing with no legs...

It has been stalking the night time for months in my house. We know it has been when we find the slime trails in the dining room. Despite twice weekly hoovering it has so far evaded us. It originates from somewhere near the corner radiator under the window. This in itself is a mystery. I mean it’s an old sash window, but no noticeable large gaps. And assuming the thing is an invertebrate, how on earth does it survive behind a very hot radiator? Not to mention the fact that although the window is low, due to the design of my house and steps that lead down through the rooms, the external height of the window is much higher above ground level, meaning that the thing with no legs must be a bit of a climber.

I have tried in vain to hunt it down, but even though I have a special duster thingy for getting behind radiators (leave me alone, cleaning makes me happy), it won’t reach due to the windowsill and radiator brackets blocking access. The thing does not go far; it heads for the area beneath my daughters chair, the dining areas of teens holding rich pickings for scavenging beasts no doubt.

Then last night some luck. After about 3 hours working on the computer in my upstairs office, I strolled to the kitchen for a cuppa. Put the light on in the dining room and there it was. It tried to run (OK I am exaggerating now) but I snapped it on camera and then put it in a glass, and evicted it to the garden. I hate to kill things.

This morning I showed the photo to the teen. “I caught the thing with no legs” I said in triumph, showing her the picture. “Ah, Leopard Slug” said the teen knowledgeably (she is a bit of a biology nerd) “Really?” I said amazed that the thing had a species.

It will probably get back in, but at least this time it has to work for its supper. There’s no room for freeloaders in this house…

1 comment:

  1. Well done! I never caught mine but I had the trails in my sitting room throughtout two summers! Embarrassingly revolting, isn't it! I have polished floorboards with a rug in the middle so I sealed up every single gap between the floorboards - and still they came in. Always in the middle of the night when I was asleep - no matter how late I stayed up! In desperation I sealed the gaps around the radiator pipes that come up through the floorboards, not really convinced that they were getting in that way, because the pipes are copper and slugs are allergic to copper as far as I know. But the silvery trails stopped immediately so I concluded that Welsh slugs must be different where copper is concerned. I heard afterwards from the mother of one of my pupils that putting down salt will stop them - she had had them in her toaster!