Thursday, 17 April 2014

Vole

There could only be one subject for today's blog post.  As we were returning from our walk around Mapperley Reservoir, we passed over what was historically known as Parker's Bridge.  This is the site where we have previously spotted a Water Vole, so as we approached the bridge, I half jokingly said, 'keep a look out for the water vole', little thinking that we would actually see this elusive creature.  How wrong I was!
There, sitting in the water, nibbling the juicy stems of the newly-emerging Great Reedmace, was the most delightful Water Vole.
Usually very nervous of people, we were careful not to make too much noise or sudden moves, but the Water Vole seemed not to be at all bothered by us watching it.  Indeed, it didn't even budge when a couple of horses and riders came clopping over the bridge.
Water Voles (Arvicola amphibius) have become rather scarce in the UK as they have suffered a catastrophic level of predation by the American Mink.  So, these days, it is rare to spot a Water Vole at all, but to get such a good view as we did this morning, simply made my day.
Go on then... just one more picture.  What a little beauty!
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