Night-time Allotment Thief (1-7-19)
Several plot-holders have complained about crops being nibbled, broken and dug up but we had no idea what was causing the problem – until now.
I set up a wild-life camera to take pictures repeatedly throughout last night. Of the hundreds of photos taken (every minute), here are the interesting ones.
It is a hare! Some us had suspected a deer was invading the site at night but here is evidence that a hare (hares?) is the culprit.
Of course, there maybe deer too: we will have to wait and see.
This last photo is interesting: it was taken the night before.
No animal on the ground but what is that white streak in the sky?
It is well illuminated by the camera's infrared light and I initially thought it might be a passing owl; five wing flaps in the picture. However, I then discovered that the exposure time of the photo was just 1/13th second. That would mean the owl flapping 65 times per second (5x13=65): impossible!
Maybe a moth very close to the camera – but that is a very straight line and do they flap that fast? Anyone got any ideas? It is the only picture to show this image.
Members should not consider causing any harm to hares, no matter how much of a nuisance they may be.
One of the aims of the Cropwell Bishop Allotment Association is, "to encourage members to value wildlife in their allotments" and, in tending our crops, "to cause the least harm to wildlife".
Hares, like birds, mice and deer have every right to be on the Allotment Site and it is up to members to use safe ways to protect crops – such as fencing and netting. Members must not deliberately harm wildlife.
(pages 4-6 of Allotment Handbook)