Thursday, 20 October 2011

Murderous mustelids

The peace and quiet was disturbed on Tuesday by the cries of a rabbit meeting its end courtesy of one of our wildlife centre stoats. It proceeded to then carry it off into the undergrowth in the usual unlikely manner. I hasten to add that in all these pictures the rabbit was dead (in what was by stoat standards a very humane kill!):

The loft-space of the wildlife centre is home to our family of stoats who can often be encountered near the car park. The same day also saw a weasel near D res. For more stoat pictures, this time from North Marsh, check out Rory’s great pictures here including the first willow tit photos we’ve seen in a while (hopefully soon to be on the newly re-mounted feeders)

Attached are some pics courtesy of HVWG of Sunday’s highlights – egyptian goose:

This was seen the same night by Tony McLean (photo here) and also on D res wall yesterday by Derrick.

Also sent through was red-crested pochard:

Curlew flying to roost:

Barn owl on North Scrub:

Which Steve has been getting on his blog too here.

And those first three whoopers of the year:

Which incidentally were joined by a further flight of seven as seen by Michael Flowers today south over North Marsh. Michael also recorded further siskin and lesser redpoll in D woods, with an apparent highlight being a dozing fox for those first into the wildlife centre hide.

Hempholme meadows progresses – this was scrape one of four last week:

Incidentally we recorded our first wader feeding there on Tuesday night – curlew at dusk. 3 pied wagtails are virtually resident (along with two kestrels which I am surprised can fly given the volume of mice they have consumed now). Red legged partridge are common too but noteworthy were a covey of eleven greys on the flood banks on Tuesday.

And the sand martin colony now looks the business:

Thanks to Mark Hammond too for this nice take on the gull roost on Sunday:

Once again, roost walk event will be Sunday the 30th of October at 4pm – details on the events page above.