As the new year begins, it is the season for foxes to find a home to raise their young. Next to our field pond, there is a large mound of earth that is friendly to wildlife. Rabbits use it to dig their burrows. In early January, when the weather was sunny, many birds came to feed amongst the fallen leaves. We saw starlings, redwings, fieldfares and garden birds, including a cheeky blue tit that pecked at the camera. We also had many rabbits, a squirrel who luckily has not discovered the bird feeders, and a mouse. The fox visited several times, inspecting the holes. It won’t be long before the rabbits move out for a while when the fox cubs arrive.
Please ignore the date on the camera, the day and time are correct, but the month is wrong. This is January, not March.
We have several rabbit holes under and through the compost heap. Often, they get taken over by foxes and badgers. Here is a video of one rabbit digging some earth out of its burrow. Instead of digging and scattering the dirt into a mound behind itself, this rabbit also pushes the soil forwards using its front paws, spreading it out into a low flat low layer. Very neat. It worked alone over a couple of days. Starting just before sunset on January 28th, and then over a period of 40 minutes on the morning of the 29th. It was amazingly neat. Finally in the last minutes of digging, a Redwing bird comes and helps out.
A few pictures taken around our birdfeeders, not birds who feed on our food, but rather birds who feed on the birds feeding on the feeders. So there is a Kestrel, and a regular visitor, a Sparrowhawk. Last year we were sitting in the garden when the Sparrowhawk struck and removed one feeding bird. There was silence for a few minutes when all others disappeared. They soon forgot and were back out. This Sparrowhawk regularly comes and sits on the bird feeders, but had been rather camera shy.
The Redwing and Fieldfare were photographed in out field. There can be flocks of 40 – 50 at a time.