May Top Trumps....wildlife geeks step this way and get your spots in here!

(683 Posts)
ArielThePiraticalMermaid Tue 01-May-12 09:37:30

I'll start - I'm hoping that someone will do better than an infernal wood pigeon and obnoxious noisy herring gull. Before the morning is up, hopefully.

And remember, cast ne'er a clout til May be out.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 01-May-12 20:35:16

Swallows and swifts seen overhead tonight.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 01-May-12 20:36:15

Oh an I heard the cuckoo while filling the feeders.

laptopcomputer Tue 01-May-12 20:38:41

I heard the cuckoo abuot an hour ago whilst out with the dogs - really thought I was going to be the first with that!

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Tue 01-May-12 20:40:09

You lived with an otter!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You're practically Gavin Maxwell (in the nicest possible sense) Wow! Tell me more, pleeeeeeease.

I went on a lovely stroll this evening and it actually felt like the start of summer. I saw.....<clears throat>

1) some sparrows
2) some pigeons
3) a gull on a lamp post
4) A tiger. It was definitely a tiger. It was a very large, fierce, orange cat with stripes.

Do I win?

GentleOtter Tue 01-May-12 20:40:36

envy at cuckoo.

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 01-May-12 20:43:55

Cuckoo was heard by the warden on the reserve about 10 days ago but tonight was the first time I've heatd it this year.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Tue 01-May-12 20:45:24

Cuckoos are EVIL!

GrimmaTheNome Tue 01-May-12 20:48:17

grin at Otter being envy at a cuckoo when we're all massively envy at her namesakes!

GrimmaTheNome Tue 01-May-12 20:52:56

(Saggy has isshoos with cuckoos)

GentleOtter Tue 01-May-12 20:54:07

We found her as a baby - her mother and father had been killed as they were both found up the road. sad

I had no idea that they did not take to water immediately so she learned to swim in the bath at first then when she was older she went to the little stream.
She ate tiny fish (which cost me a fortune) then progressed to trout (bigger fortune). I was so proud of her the day she caught her first trout in the stream. They eat the middle and leave the heads and tails.

Her holt was the recycle bin turned on it's side and she was always free to go as she lived outside but she enjoyed coming in to the house and playing with my (then) young daughter.

It took hours and hours of living down by the water to try to coax her back to the wild and as she became more able and bigger, her natural instinct began to kick in. She was very excited when she discovered other otter spraint on a rock and she was happy to stay at the water.

She used to make many different noises and you could 'understand' when she was hungry, when she wanted to play, a 'cross' noise etc and there were different sounds when she went fishing.

She never bit any of us (hence my name) and although it is 7 years since she returned successfully back to the wild, I miss her.

laptopcomputer Tue 01-May-12 20:54:14

The cuckoo here was right noisy bastard last yea,r and wouldn't shut up for weeks... smile

GrimmaTheNome Tue 01-May-12 20:56:58

Oh, that's so lovely <going all teary>. It must have been a lot of work but what a privilege.

Northey Tue 01-May-12 20:57:20

What a beautiful story, GO. Sob. <rereads for the sixth time>

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Tue 01-May-12 21:04:23

<<wipes eyes>>

GentleOtter Tue 01-May-12 21:06:24

<wails>

hellhasnofurylikeahungrywoman Tue 01-May-12 21:07:43

Lovely story, what an honour it must've been to raise her and return her to the wild.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Tue 01-May-12 21:08:30

<<plots to kill all Cuckoos>>

mrspnut Tue 01-May-12 21:18:45

What a fantastic story Otter.
My spot for today was a weasel with a death wish. It ran across the road in front of my car narrowly escaping with it's life.

GentleOtter Tue 01-May-12 21:20:26

It was an honour and I remember thinking at the time that this was a once in a lifetime experience.

I did inform the SSPCA as it is illegal to keep an otter but our little otter lived outside and used to vanish when the wildlife officer visited. Many others came to see her, though and I worried when she began to love the fuss as she might have turned very domesticated.

It was a lot of work helping her back to the wild but it was the sort of work which was so special that I loved every minute with her.

I have one non digital picture of her milling round my daughter's feet so will try to upload it by photographing it with a small pixel camera. The camera is up at the farm so I will try putting it on profile tomorrow.

chixinthestix Tue 01-May-12 21:36:37

Otter what a lovely story. And cuckoos too. All I've seen today are a couple of romantic pigeons shuffling up and down next door's fence.

ArielThePiraticalMermaid Tue 01-May-12 21:53:47

I have GENUINE tears in my eyes at that. What a lovely story.

Grimma I apologise for the message I sent you demanding you tell me all about your otter! Must take more notice of usernames grin

AIBUqatada Tue 01-May-12 22:36:16

That is completely wonderful gentleotter.

GentleOtter Tue 01-May-12 23:09:24

I don't know if it worked but I tried to post the photo.

Ooh - looking forward to GO's otter picture tomorrow.

Jealous does not come near to my emotions.

Sack that - have seen photo. Jealousy complete.

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