Celebrating our small cousins

baby vole

It’s National Mammal Week, and with the latest David Attenborough series “Mammals” showing us just how diverse a group of creatures these are, who wouldn’t want to take a moment to celebrate them? Britain has a healthy range of mammals, occupying all spaces from our seas to our mountaintops. Regular readers will know that I have a deep love of hares, those long-eared, long-footed super-sized rabbits who sit out in the countryside and take whatever the weather throws at them

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The case of the twitching leaf

fox cub

The leaf twitches. There are plenty of moving leaves in this thicket just a few yards from my home. A dense jungle of ivy and bramble, cow parsley, willowherb and fallen branches that adorns the bases of some tall ash trees, it’s alive with movement from a gusting breeze that is moving occasional teased-out-cotton clouds above me and bringing the temperature down from hot to mild. The flat white flower heads of the cow parsley jiggle, the ivy leaves flutter.

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Point-scoring in Staffordshire

14-point stag, Chasewater park

I’m not a particularly religious person, but I do to try to keep my promises. So when many years ago I promised to keep an eye on the tiny baby who was my God-daughter, I got lucky. Because it turns out that, now a grown woman,  she’s as nutty about nature as I am. So a trip to Staffordshire to see her was a doubly welcome event. I got to spend some precious time with her, and we spent it

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