30 Days Wild – Day 16 – A rare water vole sighting

TWT 30 Days Wild_countdown_16Since the floods that hit York over Christmas I have only once seen a water vole on our local river. A brief walk this evening yielded a very pleasant surprise…I often take a stroll along the local river behind my house on an evening, and to be honest it’s the voles I’m always hoping to spot. But the flooding really didn’t help them settle this year, and I was worried they were gone.

May however gave one brief sighting, nothing since. This evening I was again out on what I expected to be a futile exercise. There was of course the joy of blackbirds singing in the evening, but likely as not, no vole.

But just as I turned to go home I spotted a hint of movement in the gathering gloom. Could it be?

Water Vole

Water Vole

Yes it could! A very healthy and contented water vole.

Now, our local voles are around people all the time, so I figured I could get a better position for a photo. But the change of position wasn’t actually that stable. Unstable footing plus low light doesn’t make for the best photos. But here we are.

A closer shot, still not sharp

A closer shot, still not sharp

I’ve taken better photos of Water Voles here, but this is my favourite, just because it is so welcome. It’s also where I saw the first vole in this territory three years ago.

As it was sitting there very relaxed, I switched to video mode. So enjoy some shaky and grainy footage of a water vole grooming:

And a longer bit of footage in which the vole demonstrates how relaxed it is by ignoring a loud and stupid scooter whizzing past:

Hope that was as fun for you as it was for me.


Yes, I know. “What happened to days 9-15?”. Some of those will follow and fill the gaps. A couple of days have had to be written off due to circumstances beyond my control. But fingers crossed days 17-30 will go to plan. 30 Days, 30 Habitats may now be unreachable, but I’ll keep trying!

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2 Responses to 30 Days Wild – Day 16 – A rare water vole sighting

  1. betty says:

    How lucky to get a good view and then pictures of this little fellow – delightful. I am learning so much from your blog, thank you.

I welcome thoughts, comments and questions, so please feel free to share anything at all. Thanks, David

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