The Thrill of the Crest

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Weighing just 5g, this male Firecrest was ringed here today. It is most likely making its way into Britain for the winter, flying against the tide of birds on their way out.

Here are some more photos of it because it surely is a magnificent thing:

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I find the badgers utilising the reeds that we have pulled out of the pond very amusing and here is a sequence of them doing just that. It’s always very awkward for them getting  it all under the fence:

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If you have ever found yourself wondering what a badger latrine looks like, then here one is:

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Such clean animals, they dig latrines like these around the sett and also at the limits of their area to warn other badgers that they are in danger of trundling into occupied territory. But moving swiftly on from latrines, this photo from last night at the peanuts makes me smile. The badgers look like two portly magistrates interrogating a miscreant in the dock.

Trail camera

Before I move on from my favourite subject of badgers, this photo was taken at 7am this morning at the end of a long, hard night of worm slurping:

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Another view of the Tawny last night, for the first time ever seen on the gate rather than the perch:

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One project we have for the winter is to build some Swift boxes since there were Swifts flying around the area all summer this year. We intend to go the whole hog and play Swift calls at the relevant times next spring to alert any birds that might be looking for new lodgings that some are now available here.

Another winter project we have is to build a Weasel and Stoat (Mustelids) box. I saw the idea on a Dutch mustelid group’s website and I think it would be great to try this here:

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It’s not just Mustelids they have photographed – small mammals and even snakes as well:

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We have never seen a snake here and that is something I am very happy about. However, getting the chance to have a good look at our small mammal life without having to capture them in a trap is a very exciting prospect. Not sure what the focal lengths of our trail cameras are, but I suppose you can just make the box longer if necessary.

Good to line up a few inspiring projects to do over the winter as the summer draws to a close and always on the look out for new ideas.

 

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