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John's Mammals 2017 (1 Viewer)

dantheman

Bah humbug
Went for a seawatch late this afternoon as it was meant to be a bit windy ...

It wasn't particularly windy, and it was from the NW, which is not the best either, so basically no passage, although did have a flock of 7 Eider (kind of a Cornwall rarity tbh) fly in, land on the sea for 10 mins before continuing on ...

... anyway. On only my second scan of the sea was surprised to see a fin maybe 400 yards out ... with a looooong body attached. Oops, that isn't a dolphin. Indeed it wasn't - it was a Minke Whale. Saw it as a dark shape just under the water briefly before it rolled smoothly through again - just a glimpse of the head, then the body and curved fin, with a bit more body. But not seen again, unfortunately, despite switching to bins for a bit.

Only the second I've seen from Falmouth in the last 8 years or so ... and thought it was meant to be more of a random summer thing than a winter thing tbh!
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Went for a seawatch late this afternoon as it was meant to be a bit windy ...

It wasn't particularly windy, and it was from the NW, which is not the best either, so basically no passage, although did have a flock of 7 Eider (kind of a Cornwall rarity tbh) fly in, land on the sea for 10 mins before continuing on ...

... anyway. On only my second scan of the sea was surprised to see a fin maybe 400 yards out ... with a looooong body attached. Oops, that isn't a dolphin. Indeed it wasn't - it was a Minke Whale. Saw it as a dark shape just under the water briefly before it rolled smoothly through again - just a glimpse of the head, then the body and curved fin, with a bit more body. But not seen again, unfortunately, despite switching to bins for a bit.

Only the second I've seen from Falmouth in the last 8 years or so ... and thought it was meant to be more of a random summer thing than a winter thing tbh!

Great stuff! I also thought it was a later in the summer thing due to not bothering to come inshore till the plankton bloom is there - learn something new every day.....

Humpback off Slapton this afternoon as well, I should think that might attract a bit of attention if it sticks.

John
 

dantheman

Bah humbug
Great stuff! I also thought it was a later in the summer thing due to not bothering to come inshore till the plankton bloom is there - learn something new every day.....

Humpback off Slapton this afternoon as well, I should think that might attract a bit of attention if it sticks.

John

Cheers! Saw that on twitter earlier -

https://twitter.com/SeaSkywatch


Still happy enough with mine tho, although that would have been mega.
 

snlw

Simon
Recent sightings at work include a pair of Roe Deer, 2+ Red Fox, Grey Squirrels & Rabbits at MBW in Weybridge. On the Luton Hoo Estate 40+ Fallow Deer, a few Muntjac, several Brown Hare, 2 Brown Rats & today I saw my first Weasel of the year shortly followed a Stoat in partial ermine (white tail & head with a couple of white patches along the body).

Cheers, Simon
 

Timbirder3

Well-known member
Preview pages of the soon to be published Wildguides Britain's Mammals are available on the Amazon website. At first glance this looks like it could be THE essential guide we've been lacking for so long. (Rather than just a very good addition to other field guides which is how I regard most of the other Wildguides series)
Tim
 

jasperpatch

Amy, Brit in Quebec.
We're at the end of a prolonged thaw at the moment (current forecast has us dropping back down to -20C at the weekend), snowbanks have shrunk considerably in the last week. Lots of subterranean tunnels being revealed - great to see the paths the smaller mammals have been using, and pair them up with the areas the Barred Owl has been focusing on!
Couple of Eastern Chipmunks running around yesterday and today. First of the year. We usually see them in Feb for a couple of sunny days, then they hunker down again until the warmer temperatures return later on.
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Preview pages of the soon to be published Wildguides Britain's Mammals are available on the Amazon website. At first glance this looks like it could be THE essential guide we've been lacking for so long. (Rather than just a very good addition to other field guides which is how I regard most of the other Wildguides series)
Tim

Had a quick look on Amazon. Congratulations to James Lowen and Mark Hows on getting some pix into it!

John
 

MarkHows

Mostly Mammals
A few bits over the last days, a cracking stoat on the way to the Goshawks on Sunday (they were cracking as well) but he eluded the camera. Some more co-operative subjects at Burwell on Friday (Roe deer) and a local Fallow.

A bit quiet really, but spring is on its way.


Mark
 

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JCL

Well-known member
Two Lynx week

Just back from Estonia and Spain, having seen Iberian & Eurasian Lynx in successive weekends.

Details of Iberian:http://www.jameslowen.com/27-feb-2017-blog-the-lynx-effect.html

Scant details of Eurasian: http://www.birdforum.net/showthread.php?p=3534809#post3534809

Of interest, Eurasian is basically twitchable! Can't write more presently as broke bones in Estonia and in pain. But couple of photos attached: crap Eurasian thro windscreen at dusk, smart Iberian at close range.

James
 

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Farnboro John

Well-known member
Common Pipistrelle at Sandhurst Sewage Farm yesterday, about 1500 hrs. This is the season for daylight bats, nice to see though.

Saw one of the two Siberian Chiffchaffs (which was what I was actually looking for) but three other Chiffs firmly refused to be the second one: and the present individual stayed at the back of the bushes where I couldn't photograph it.

Elsewhere three Adders were basking near Farnborough Airport.

John
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
Double Top turned up last night - I say turned up, she was sitting on the lawn waiting for me to open the door as if she hadn't been AWOL for two and a half weeks. Tail chewed, fur out in hanks, belly naked, teats distended: she's got cubs. So I'm a fox uncle again.....

She wolfed three chicken breast fillets in quick succession. There was one more but that was for my breakfast today - there are limits!

I expect she'll be back tonight, in fact I expect it will be back to normal regularity now.

John
 

Farnboro John

Well-known member
White Tip pitched up yesterday, twice - separated by about 45 minutes during which time the neighbours had someone ambling home or walking the dog almost continuously.

John
 

crazyfingers

Well-known member
Unfortunately I think that I have a skunk in the house and unfortunately we have too much clutter to easily look for it. night before last the cat came up to my bedroom at night smelling terribly of skunk. It was a mild day and I managed to air out the house by opening some windows. But again last night the house smelled up with skunk. But the cat does not stink again.

How to get a skunk out? I have a Havahart trap I can put in the bedroom. I guess I also need to leave the basement door open tonight and hope it goes out and stays out.
 

jasperpatch

Amy, Brit in Quebec.
Mammal additions are ticking along slowly but surely here. Upgraded short-tailed shrew to 'alive' on the list, having only seen them in the claws of our local Barred owl until this week.
Northern River Otters spotted in an open patch on the lake, popping up and down between floating ice, and keeping an eye on a nearby Bald Eagle. Too distant for photos as nice as crazyfingers', maybe I'll get lucky later in the year.
A brief but magical encounter with a Snowshoe Hare whilst stomping in the local woods. First time I've seen one that close to home, one of my favourites, especially in winter white.
Then number 10 for the year, a skunk shuffling along in the ditch by the road as we walked back from the mailbox this morning. Looking at last years list, I failed to see a skunk at all last year, so this was a nice treat (no ideas for skunk removal crazyfingers apologies, and good luck!).

I haven't ventured far afield this year yet, so all these are on my 'green' list from home,, I made it to 15 last year. Still a couple of regulars that I'm almost certain of at some point, so nice to reach 10 so early in the year.

Thoroughly enjoying reading about everyone else's sightings, some great photos too.
 

crazyfingers

Well-known member
After several days with Havahart traps set in the house at night, I've come to the conclusion that there is no skunk in the house. Rather, it's just the cat who somehow got himself sprayed and still stinks some. But I haven't the will to try to give the cat a bath. He's go berserk and I expect that the attempt would only be a giant fail.

I still don't know how he got himself sprayed. While the cats can go out the cat flap from the basement to under the back deck, the deck and an area of the back yard are enclosed with fence 8 feet high and material too narrow for the cats to climb out or go through. An adult skunk could never get into the fenced in area except by tunneling. And knowing how skunks would only spray as a last resort, I can't see a skunk spraying the cat from outside the fence. It would just go away.

A baby skunk could get through the fence. The openings are large enough for a gray squirrel to get though, with effort. But not an adult skunk. It's possible that a baby skunk was in the fence long enough to spray the cat and get out again. There are no remains inside the fence.

Or, and this is the big question, a ground hog had dug a hole from the garden about 4 feet from the edge of the fence last summer. I filled in that end of the hole back in in December. But it's entirely possible that there is an opening inside the fence under the porch and under several chords of stacked firewood we have next to the foundation in there. So right now I'm watching whether something unplugs the hole that I filled in last December. Perhaps when the snow finally melts in that spot I'll unplug the hole myself.

I don't have any photos of a skunk. I would like to see it if it's in a hole under my wood pile.

My last sighting of a skunk was at least 15 years ago when a skunk was in my garage in the evening. At the time I was not into animal photography and my only interest was to encourage the skunk out of my garage.
 

crazyfingers

Well-known member
Yup. Sorry for not specifying. Striped skunk. Very cute and unlikely to spray unless as a last resort.

They can be very handy when they decide to go for and destroy underground wasp nests. Skunks have destroyed several underground wasp nests in my yard over the years. Quite beneficial creatures mostly.
 
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