More poo and percussion

To get back to poo. On several occasions I have seen bushy-tailed critters about the size of a cat and thought they must be stoats even though they are rather bigger, bushier and have bigger ears than your average stoat. We don’t have pine martens because there aren’t any pine trees, but there is a lot of poo left on the parapet by the side of the road where it crosses the stream, and that is a feature of martens and not stoats. The poo is often full of cherry stones which isn’t really a stoat thing either.

Today I learned that there are two kinds of marten—the pine marten and the stone marten. Different habitat, slightly different colouring, and I recognised my bushy-tailed friends. Looking for a you tube video, I found this, and was reminded of the beast in the culvert, that ate dead voles, dog biscuit and took a potato to play with, and I knew I had discovered who the neighbours are.



Other interesting discoveries, the bird that makes the gentle poo poo poo noise (poo again) is the hoopoe. I see them often now on the roof and round the front of the house.


and what I thought was a night bird  or an electrical noise of some kind is in fact a midwife toad.


While getting this post together, I was disturbed by a knocking coming from the attic just over my head. The cats were in the barn and don’t generally knock anyway, so I went up to have a look. The knocking stopped and looking through one of the many holes in a shutter saw the cause hopping about in the grass down below.

It’s all go here, isn’t it?



Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

28 thoughts on “More poo and percussion”

  1. It’s so cool that you’ve been able to figure out who and what these creatures are. My cat on my lap got quite agitated by the hoopoe sounds. 🙂
    I didn’t know what a stoat was, and I wasn’t sure what a marten looked like–so thanks for that!
    This year the woodpeckers around us have been quite active.

    1. Husband has mown an area all round the house so we can actually walk around it in high summer. The meadow comes right up to the windows otherwise and it’s too high (my shoulder height) to get through. The birds love having a bit of short grass where they can peck for insects and worms. The woodpeckers much prefer pecking in soft earth to drilling through tree bark.

  2. I remember the poo (old habits die hard and I was a mother of four 😀 ) and I thought it was a Marten that you were seeing evidence of. Isn’t life in the country a constant delight … all those noises and nests and signs and sightings – I wish you happy days discovering more of the locals you share your patch with.

    1. I haven’t tried to photograph the marten poo as my phone doesn’t have a zoom and they are only about the size of a cigarette except for the ones full of pips that are more cigar size. I should have put something with the badger poo to give an idea of scale. You’re talking stonking half kilo dumps. I didn’t need a zoom there 🙂 It’s absolutely fascinating, creeping about, listening and watching.

      1. It makes me curiously happy to know that someone whose talent I value and admire is as keen as I on skulking about harmlessly stalking animals and birds 🙂

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