Tuesday, May 24, 2011

I took this image of one of the badgers a couple of nights ago.  I was surprised as the first badger came out at 6.40pm and I was totally unprepared; they occasionally do this at this time of year.  However, I managed to get all the flashes mounted and turned on without causing any disturbance.  It still took a further 2 hours for her to move into the correct spot to get the shot!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

I have spent a couple of afternoons in the fox hide waiting for Mr Fox over the last week; annoyingly, after some very regular and bold appearances, he now seems to have become more shy.  Luckily, there is a great tit nest in the base of an old hornbeam just a metre or so from where I am sitting. So, to pass the time, I have been recording the time interval between visits from each of the adult birds. I am waiting to amass more times to get a more accurate amperage but one thing I have noticed is that when there is a long time gap of 5 minutes or so between a visit, the second bird comes in within a couple of seconds of the first, suggesting, maybe, that the pair of birds forage together, at least when they travel further afield.  This may confer an advantage, as far as predator detection is concerned, with two pairs of eyes rather than just one.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Sadly, the woodpecker nest hole I have been keeping under observation for the past few weeks has met with disastrous results - the tree fell down!  That'll teach the pair who chose the easy option of chiselling out a rotten birch as they often do.  Woodpecker, however, excavate several alternative holes, so they have, hopefully occupied another site.
I built a makeshift hide to photograph the fox on Tuesday, however, clever Mr Fox circled around the back and rumbled me; I did say the hide was makeshift!  I have now erected a better, well camouflaged and light-tight hide which may prove better.
Two foxes came in to the badger watch last night but were quickly chased off by the badgers.  In all, there were possibly 4 adult badgers plus the cub.  There was a good display of behaviour including bedding collection, mating and play.

Monday, May 9, 2011

I have been away working on Skomer Island last week photographing puffins and did not have time to update the blog before I left with the exciting news.
On the badger watch on 30th April, as well as a sow, we actually had a cub present!  This is very exciting as I have not confirmed any new cubs over the last couple of years.  The cub appeared quite well developed and I suspect has been reared at another outlier sett; it is also possibly the sole survivor of a litter.

I have another watch tonight and hopefully will get another sighting.