Sunday, 22 October 2017

Ready for winter?

The hazel dormouse is one of the few native British land mammals I have never seen in the wild, so today I joined a dormouse nest box check in the Forest of Dean in the hope of 'meeting' one.
This was last scheduled survey before winter - the checks are undertaken each month from May to October - but the previous surveys in 2017 had found either only one dormouse or none.  However this time we were lucky, and the 50 boxes revealed five dormice in total, from two juveniles only just at the minimum weight to survive the winter (15g) to adults who were well-fattened at over twice that weight (and all of them every bit as cute as expected!).