We have a mystery marauder. Something dug my garden out one night. And I mean dug it out.
We managed to trap a raccoon, but that's not the end of the story. Possibly, the garden was raided by a raccoon, but while raccoons will dig, they generally dig holes. This destruction indicated a bigger and a less precise animal, which threw out half the dirt, destroying most of the seedlings.
But another clue is that something bigger and tougher is preying on raccoons. Something big enough to make a thorough meal out of one -- Larry found the few scraps it left -- and to take off the lower leg of this little guy we caught in our trap (who now lives in Brookgreen Gardens).
There are stray dogs around, often abandoned in the state park across the creek. Coyotes have been spotted in the area, though a little further inland. So far. The species of the marauder is still unknown, but I'm in recovery mode with the garden.
I lost all but 2 little carrot seedlings, but they are hanging in there. And so are the peppers; doing well, in fact!
I'm restarting the carrots, this time in starter pots, and fencing the garden when I get them in. Raccoons climb fences, but we also employ cayenne pepper and Critter Ridder [TM]. This is a real learning experience!