Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The aaah factor

In the depths of winter, having to walk the dog when it's still dark, minus five, belting down with snow and you then have to clean her feet before she is allowed back into the house can be a bit of a chore. But this time of year and the weather how it has been lately more than makes up for all that.
 Living where we do out in the sticks I get to see all sorts. In the past week or so our wander in the area around the village has produced a splendid male Ring Ousel, a Wheatear, Yellow Wagtails, Grey Partridges, a Mistle Thrush sitting on a clutch of 3, Long-tailed Tits building a nest and a small Leveret in it's Form alongside a track.
 Today I happened to notice a movement in the undergrowth on the other side of a stream. A closer look revealed it to be the tiniest of Fox cubs. Further movement caught my eye and there were not one but actually four, not more than four or five yards in front of me. I ushered Millie away and left them to go about their business.
 This evening I had promised myself a visit to nearby Rookery Pits to try and see a Purple Heron that had dropped in, but as this had gone a bit quiet with no reports since lunchtime I decided to go back and have a look for the cubs.
 I found them with no problem, the Earth seems to be in the middle of an enormous Rabbit Warren and they disappeared down several of the holes as they played around the various tree trunks and vegetation. Most of the time they were out of sight, but I did manage a couple of pics in the fading light.

 You can see how young these animals are as their eyes are still blue. I guess they've only just left the safety of the nest chamber.
 Hopefully I can get back to get some more photos as they get older and a bit more adventurous.

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