Saturday, December 22, 2007

 

Ermine

An Ermine, in its winter colours, was discovered in one of the traps this morning. Looks like it had happily been eating a mouse that had also been caught in the trap and then discovered it was itself now caught. Took it to the woods and let it go. Don't know if it really was wild, feral, or a recent escapee from a fur farm, but it appeared in rude health. It had a little look around and then scampered away into the brush.

The Ermine is also known as the Stoat, and as the Short-Tailed Weasel. Its Latin name is Mustela erminea. They have to eat half their weight in mice everyday or they starve to death. That's an awful lot of mice. I'm glad it's about, as now the weather is turning colder, all the rodents are searching for somewhere warm to hold up for the winter, and make a bee-line for the few houses there are out here in the countryside.

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