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ZEISS DTI thermal imaging cameras. For more discoveries at night, and during the day.

John's Mammals 2020 (1 Viewer)

Some recent camera trap photos, Badgers in my garden, Mink and fox in my small private nature reserve and the golden rabbit on a survey site, all in Cambridgeshire



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An Edible Dormouse from the weekend


Nice one! I was at Wendover Woods last night and there were loads, they must have had a good breeding season. We saw about 20 and got pictures of varying standards of at least 4, finishing our session at 2230 - which was gratifyingly early!


Nice one! I was at Wendover Woods last night and there were loads, they must have had a good breeding season. We saw about 20 and got pictures of varying standards of at least 4, finishing our session at 2230 - which was gratifyingly early!



Mine were very skittish due to the presence of two tawny owls in close proximity, saw about a dozen.

Some Edible Dormice from Tuesday at Wendover Woods - general advice to anybody going: pick a night with little wind (and, obviously, dry weather); use red light; and be prepared for the fact that even without Tawny Owls close by the little blighters are skittish when they first emerge. They tend to settle down later in the evening once its properly dark and they've been out for a while. They are very vocal so not hard to find.


Pix (NB: each picture is of a different individual!):

A skittish one....

Four non-skittish ones later on: mostly fat adults preparing to hibernate, which they will do soon - probably before the end of September.

In the vertical crop you can see an area of stripped bark on which the Edible Dormouse has been feeding. I don't know how much they take in a night but I suspect staying on its current meal might also influence the beast to stay put when illuminated.


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Gingerly looked over the edge of the cliffs in Pembs yesterday. Primarily I was looking for Fulmars. :eek!: Found several grey seal pups instead. A first for me and my old man. :t:


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I don't think I've ever seen whitecoats, either. Bravo!

My foxes have been a large part of my mammal watching this year and last night was unusually interesting.

Worryingly Big Whitey pitched up with his left front paw held up off the ground - remember his rear left has a long-term disability already.... he devoured three drumsticks and made off hopping on the other front leg. A photo showed blood on the upper surface of the paw so most likely it's a bite from a fight or argument. He's a tough blighter so hopefully he'll mend fast, but he is four years old and ain't young no more.

Later on Maz, who was outside having a fag, notified me that Rip had arrived and a full-grown cub had trotted past and was sitting at the corner of the nearby green. Rip sat down at the far end of the garden path. That's quite unusual for her, normally she comes closer. So I threw her the last drumstick - I'm quite good at landing them close to the intended recipient and this one stopped almost between her paws. She sniffed it and then, to both my surprise and Marion's, left it, walked halfway up the path towards us and sat down facing us in the manner that normally means "feed me please".

What? You've a perfectly good drumstick there, and in fact I haven't got another one for you! I told her this calmly and she looked at us for a few seconds, then looked deliberately round at the cub and then back at us.

After a pause the cub stood up and walked, then trotted to the end of our path, sniffed the drumstick, mouthed it then picked it up firmly and went away with it.

Rip watched it go then stood up and circled on the spot, finishing by sitting down facing us again. We realised we'd just seen a fox lesson: she'd been teaching the cub to be fed by us but like a good mother had interposed herself between us and its approach. Clever girl!

I fetched her a raw egg, showing it to her from the doorway before advancing slowly to put it on the lawn as I generally do when forced to fall back on this for lack of chicken (in this house its egg after chicken). She maintained a distance of about five yards and once I'd returned to the doorway, came forward, picked the egg up without breaking it and made off through the archway.

Minke Whale just North of Mousa viewed from above Sandwick yesterday: it only showed twice then completely vanished despite half an hour of trying to relocate it. Also three Otters yesterday, two at North Roe and One at Collafirth.

Today (28/9) the only significant mammal was another Otter, this time by our base at Hillswick: it was running around in a grass field seemingly trying to find Rabbits by scent. It flushed one but couldn't catch it. Great view of the Otter though!

Our Otter was swimming past the house as soon as we went out this morning, now that's how to start the day! Common Seal also in the bay further round.

Could not resist posting a couple of pics of my first ever wild harvest mouse. I found this yesterday at Westhay reserve on the Somerset levels.

I have hoped to bump into one for 40 odd years and it finally happened while I was looking for a bearded tit that was calling a few metres away.


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My efforts from Shetland so far plus a few seals



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Some amazing views of the three Northern Bottlenosed Whales in Gare Loch on Saturday



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Lucky enough to be socially distanced from Mark with the amazing close Otter - I mean, we know Otters are fairly easy on Shetland but it was barely socially distanced itself! Fantastic encounter, following on from two others, with Tennessee Warbler and Arctic Warbler. :t:

The Harvest Mouse and Northern Bottlenoses are stunning as well - congratulations to all concerned! It's not a time for being jealous after a day like yesterday but that's the only reason I'm not. 3:)

Latest Otter news from Shetland: Roy had one in the ditch next to the road while walking down to us from the hotel this morning, and at lunchtime one - perhaps a youngster recently independent - calmly ambled across the garden and over the wall towards the sea while we were standing around outside! Too amazed to remember my camera was actually in my hand.

Lots of Common and Grey Seals over the last week and a half, plus Rabbits: but a definite bonus yesterday with a Hedgehog at last light. Not only a year tick but a photo!

Night before last on the way back from the pub, another Hedgehog, this time in the garden of our accommodation. Yesterday five Otters, a mother with three small kits and the presumed recently independent animal that goes through our garden daily, right beside my car seen from indoors!

Also some Harbour Porpoises at Sandwick.

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