Thursday, 1 March 2007

VOLE!


Astonishingly, a water vole under the pipe that's near the salt bin. It looked a bit confused - after all, half its natural cover's gone, the place looks like the Somme - but it ate some shoots I couldn't identify and then some buttercup leaves, and then swam across to the opposite bank. I watched it for about ten minutes till it made off through the water in the direction of the east culvert. I hope it wasn't an ave atque vale moment.
Will make sure I take my camera next time!

3 comments:

Dave said...

Good spot after all the de-forestation! Is this the earliest anywhere this year? - If such stats exist. And what time of day did he/she turn up? I'd always thought they'd be early evening/morning - don't know why.

Kate said...

It was around 6pm, Dave. An adult with a whitish muzzle and, as is usual with the Staggs Brook voles, seemingly unbothered by noise and fuss. People were passing within a few feet and talking loudly, but I was still able to get pretty close.

Kate said...

To return to your earlier question, I don't know. Someone in the mammal forum posted a photo of something that looked very like a water vole a few weeks ago, and since they don't hibernate as such, it's theoretically possible to spot them any month. But this is the first I've seen since November 5th last year and, if you look at the link 'A Water Vole's Year', they stay mostly underground till April/May.