Friday, 3 June 2011

Litter Picker

Vole eats picker.

Two latrines.

Essential to any voling kit is some sort of long stick - it will help you climb up and down steep banks, and part grass so you can look for trackways and burrows. Lots of people use broom handles for the purpose because they're sturdy, but I like a litter picker because I can use it to pick up small pieces of vegetation to check for vole-cut ends, or to pluck grass out of the line of my camera's vision.

Today I used it to deposit a small piece of apple on a sandbank, then laid it next to me on the grass. Within twenty minutes a water vole pushed its nose out of a burrow right by the litter picker's business end, and proceeded to bite the plastic prongs. Then it optimistically tried to drag the picker into the burrow. I can only assume this is because it could smell the apple still.

I've had water voles try and take my bag in the past, but never one quite so ambitious in its thievery.

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