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Grantham Town must cancel local derby against Worksop after CROWS left the field unplayable

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Grantham Town called off local derby against Worksop after CROWS chasing match day snack left the field at The Meres unplayable

  • Grantham Town had to postpone a league game after crow damage
  • Worksop Town would make a 40 mile trip to The Meres before the cancellation
  • Crows were attracted to chafer larvae that made a home in Grantham’s field
  • A GoFundMe has been launched to cover the cost of a £20,000 replacement

Grantham Town were forced to cancel their Northern Premier League East game against Worksop Town after crows damaged their pitch beyond repair.

Worksop was supposed to make the 40-mile journey as the crow flies, but Monday’s holiday at The Meres was postponed three hours before kick-off, as evidenced by a tweet from The Gingerbreads.

The playing field at Lincolnshire’s South Kesteven Sports Stadium, which is owned by the council, has been infested by chafer larvae, the ground-dwelling larvae of chafer beetles, which search for crows on match day.

Crows — and possibly foxes, too — have created soil problems that couldn’t be remedied in time. It will be costly to fix as the pitch will need to be replaced completely.

Grantham Town have released photos of their field damage from hungry crows

Grantham tweeted: ‘#thegingerbreads have had an ongoing problem with Chafer larvae on the field at The Meres. Despite extensive work trying to fix it and keep it playable, overnight issues have made it just not that. The club is in consultation with the Council about how [to] forward.’

In addition, they detailed the issue in a sharp biology lesson for those interested. ‘Here are the chafer larvae that are a crow’s best meal,’ they said, next to images of the turf at De Meres. “The crow breaks through the turf and causes damage to the field.”

The BBC reported on the matterand notes that the only way to treat the chafer grub problem is to replace the turf.

Graham Cowell, BBC Radio Lincolnshire’s Grantham reporter, said: ‘They showed up this morning and overnight the crows seem to have had an absolute field day. They tore a piece just outside the penalty area on the north side of the ground.

“It almost looks like it could be more than crows, apparently foxes love the beetle larvae too.”

Tiny beetle larvae attract the crows - and possibly foxes - who enjoy them as a snack

Tiny beetle larvae attract the crows – and possibly foxes – who enjoy them as a snack

Grantham has a GoFundMe Page to cover the cost of replacing the pitch at The Meres, with a goal of £20,000.

The page also states that work will be done on replacing the pitch on Wednesday, and that no games can be played until the issue is resolved.

Grantham are in a race against time to get their field on track for Saturday’s FA Cup first qualifying round with Rugby Town.

According to the Royal Horticultural Society, several types of chafer larvae that feed on grassroots can cause problems in lawns.

Crows have caused a number of problems for football teams and players across Lincolnshire

Crows have caused a number of problems for football teams and players across Lincolnshire

Crow problems seem to be a problem in football across the county of Lincolnshire.

Last season, League One Lincoln City used models of birds of prey to deter birds from attacking their field to bury food scraps left in the stands by Imps fans.

Meanwhile, four fields for Lincoln and District Sunday Football League games were taken out of use in 2018 due to crow damage.

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