My blog is mostly about wildlife, particularly birds, walking, days out, all growing things and anything else that comes to mind.
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Monday, 27 April 2009

My garden mystery!

A couple of days ago, I mentioned that there was a bit of a mystery surrounding the ground feeder with the mesh guard over it that sits outside my lounge windows. I use the "cage" so the Feral Pigeons don't get at the food and it gives the ground feeding birds a supply of their own.

Whilst it hasn't happened since, over two nights something odd happened.

It all started, I think, because I left some cheese out overnight. The ground feeder normally has sunflower hearts, usually a fat ball and sometimes small lumps of cheese. The robin, dunnocks, occasionally blue and great tits and, if the other feeders have run out, greenfinches and goldfinches all help themselves. Additionally I have a wood mouse that is normally there feeding every day - and it loves sunflower hearts!

In the morning it is not unusual therefore, to find the tray empty of sunflower hearts (cheese and fat are usually still there) as the mouse mostly feeds under the cover of darkness.

However - I'd left a fair-sized lump of cheese outside the cage and hadn't taken it in before nightfall. In the morning this had gone completely - and it couldn't have been the mouse as the quantity was far too much. The cheese under cover was still there.

Now the two mornings in question.

The first morning, the cage had been moved about two feet (I'm not yet into metric); this had caused the tray to be tipped up! All the food had gone - cheese lumps, sunflower hearts (topped up just before the evening in question) and the remains of a fatball. A very hungry visitor.

The next morning, the cage had moved again but, as this time the tray remained upright, not so much food had disappeared.

So the questions is: "Who done it"?

I can only assume it was a fox and I do have them visiting the garden. I would love the think it was a badger (it would be big and strong enough) or even a hedgehog.

So - I will have to settle for a fox.

This evening there's some (live) mealworms for a very hungry robin. I wonder if......

Any other ideas?



Just as a footnote: The robin is backwards and forwards to the mealworms and flies off with about 3/4 in his beak. Always the same route down the garden and then over the neighbour's shed - I do hope he brings his family in due course :D

14 comments:

Warren Baker said...

you're probably right with the fox idea Tricia. Hope its a badger though!

I would think that the Robin will bring in at least one fledgling to your garden.

mick said...

A very interesting mystery. Can you get a sensor light and camera set up? The badger would be the most exciting of course!

Jan said...

You will have to dress yourself up in some warm clothes, flask of hot coffee and sit and watch Tricia! Or get an infra red webcam set up like I do for my hoggies?

Tricia said...

Warren - I hope it's a badger but I've never seen one in the garden unfortunately.

Mick - I wish I could. I've outside lights on the wall but these go off at about 10.30 ish. so I'd need a camera

Jan - I've often pondered an infrared webcam as I'm sure there's various goings on in the garden at night. Hope your hoggies are visiting as usual. :D

I'll have to look into it!

SPD said...

OOO NEXT DOORS CAT! hope it isnt the not so cute variety of large mouse type thingy that rhymes with cat....eeek!

Prob a fox tho not seen any badgers round here. Our grebes are back and we now have Bob the robin who sits on the rake as we try to tidy up the cut grass, ah springtime

Lv
SPD

holdingmoments said...

Well, I think you're going to have to sit up and solve this mystery for us Tricia. :)
A fox seems the most likely culprit though.

I'm sure the Robin will bring the kids when they're bigger. Some great photo opportunities there.

Richard said...

Well now if you were here in Minnesota I would say it was a racoon or a possum. But since you are not, I can't help you out any. Aren't badgers mean???

Graham James said...

I've heard that if you have badgers in the area, Tricia, the best way to get them to visit you is to put out peanut butter sandwiches. Apparently, they cannot resist them.

Tricia said...

Graham - I really wish it was badgers - that would be great!

I've heard about their liking for peanut butter but, I no doubt, the foxes do too! Lol

Tricia said...

SPD - methinks a fox. I must check out your Grebes!

Keith - I don't think I'd keep awake Lol And shall await the arrival of the youngsters with camera aimed at the window!

Richard - I honestly don't know whether they're mean or not. I shall have to research that!

ShySongbird said...

What a mystery Tricia, probably a fox but could just be a badger. HLH saw one a few doors away in a front garden one night! And my brother whose garden backs onto allotments where there are setts has seen one in his next door neighbour's garden.

Tricia said...

Jan - I'm sure it was a fox. One wandered past the glass doors last night at about 10 ish!

St said...

http://rareplants.co.uk/product.asp?s=7X9tyy326106&strParents=&CAT_ID=81&P_ID=310

trillium plants copy and paste this address

Tricia said...

Many thanks for keeping me updated ST - will investigate further!

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