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We currently (had) two raised beds in our patio as well as a thin flower bed against the back wall. 

We also have a water feature (which was full at the time) and other random grow bags etc all used for veg. 

We came home about 9.30 today to find everything ruined. The raised bed weed repellant lining was ripped, the soil was all turned over and all of the plants were burried (but not eaten). The water feature was completely drained of water, except for about a centimetre in the bottom. There was also mud from the raised beds in the water feature.

Any ideas what could have done this!?

We have seen a few mice around the walls and as the veg was not eaten, we thought this may have been something? (a cat?) chasing the mice??!

If anyone has had a similar experience, your thoughts would be appreciated!

P.s. we live in a rural area (near a woodland). 

Thank you!


Charlotte - you poor thing.  Its so disappointing when something ruins all your hard work.  In my experience deer or mice would eat things, not bury them.  Maybe badgers or foxes ?



Charlotteso sorry this has happened to you .

Not sure what it could be but as you're near woodland could it be deer? Photos would be a help if you can. Someone here will be able to offer other suggestions I'm sure.




What a horrible thing to come home to. sounds a bit extreme for a cat. Have you got badgers? or maybe a fox. or humans? have you ruled that out 

Thank you for your replies! Definately not humans, it does seem extreme for a cat. I suppose it could be badgers, but it happened in daylight (between 6.30 and 9) and it was still light when we got home. 

I find the "missing" water a little weird.. would a badger be able to jump up here and get out? 

I have attached a picture. Luckily, I think most of the plants are salvageable as long as it doenst happen again. 




It was defiantely something with sharp claws.. as you can see, the lining is just shredded  


Badgers I think.  They are powerful, determined and destructive


I also think badger but confused because they are nocturnal



I can't think of anything else but a badger - if they'd been disturbed elsewhere for instance, possibly by dogs, they may be out earlier in the evening and feeling unsettled and looking for a place to hide?    

There's a lot going on for badgers at the moment in some parts of the country - whereabouts are you?  If this behaviour could have anything to do with the way the cull is being managed it needs to be reported.

It could be connected to the cull.  

This cull sounds awful


it may have been birds.. i say this as i left tray of potted up plants on my table.. and next day all the pots were up and the plants were out and right mess everywhere

i think it was the pigeons fighting.. as htey do that alot here.

and if they got in the water it is amazing how it can be emptied after a flurry like that..

and they left nasty scratch marks all over my cars bonnet paint work after as well..

Probably a young badger's the culprit.  They venture away from the sett (last year's cubs) and often end up as roadkill round here.  Almost always the small/young ones, as far as I can tell, and it's interesting that whereas crows & magpies etc seem to scavenge on dead rabbits/foxes/pheasant etc at the roadside, I've never yet seen them near a dead badger.


If it was birds they'd have to be the size of an ostrich!  I grew up on a farm, I know what pigeons can do - they can't do that!

I know this sounds odd but bear with me.

2 years ago we had pole cats in the garden (in Stockport of all places!) and they were crazy things, and the strongest scrappiest things you'll see - my tough old cat was terrified.

They ripped everything up looking for bedding material and food,m and they didn't care whether they were out day or night.

The pest guy caged them, and after confirming they were not ferret/polecat crossed (which could have been exterminated - not that I wanted that) he moved them to a Cheshire plain.  They went nuts in the cage, and managed to turn a big metal cage on it's side.

Apparently ferrets can escape and become ferral in a few days also, and this is pretty common.


Just a thought!





Hadn't thought of that - have a look at this what do you think?

Doesn't explain the missing water though - although I think that ferrets like to play in water.  And it has been quite hot lately so some might be lost by evaporation?

Oh god that bull dogs' face is hilarious - that's what my cats face was like when it saw the Polecat.
like - "Weird man, weird"



Could it be stone martens? We had stone martens who used to go mad in the garden at night and literally crash their way through the plants crushing everything. They are a real pest here and particularly like to chew cables and rubber fittings under car bonnets, in fact car insurance covers marten damage.


otnorot wrote (see)

Do you have racoons?


I don't think there are many, and of the few we have, they're normally dumped ones by idiots that think they're great pets. 

They're only really wild in Northern America, although I'm sure they'd do fine here too.

They seem to be like mental polecats.  And they're mental enough.


Otter? or even Mink. We have had mink in the garden and they are the worst possible thing. They dug under and into our Quail run and killed them all, without even eating more than one or two.