December 2018

Alastair Mackintosh Reports:  Hi Will. Not a lot again this past month. One rat and two hedgehogs. Both hedgehogs in the same trap as last month and with out moving it. That makes 9 from the same area in two months! As I said previously, what chance would a ground nesting bird have of successfully hatching a brood of eggs in that locality! I am quite convinced they are a much under-estimated predator.

The pigeon that flew into the window sat with no sign of life for several minutes. Then if touched it would give a slight tremor. It eventually came to life and gradually started walking away with a pronounced limp. Then after a short distance took to wing. We have not seen it, nor any sign of it, since. One can only hope for the best. Not a lot of wekas calling at the moment, though they do seem to move move about a bit. The ducks, quail and pheasants still around and quite common, so all in all, things not too bad. Regards to all, Alastair.

Bryan Riley Reports: Hi Will, Have not caught any critters in the traps in November!  Have put cheese on the traps this time as well as peanut butter so hope this will attract them? Also added apple to the opossum traps!

A pair of pheasant on the way up.

Alison Nicholl Reports: Total caught for the month = 1 rat. I also have lost one tunnel, trap and all from behind the information panel in Will’s Gully. Extensive searches have not located it. (Will’s comment: Another stolen or maybe added to the weka treasure chest?? I did have a look too but couldn’t find anything so stolen for sure.)

Mike Olive Reports: Good news – I shifted my cage trap into the open and catch a female ‘other’ but nothing else caught.

John Wilson Reports: Checked traps this month but nothing caught although did see 2 or 3 wekas.

NZ flax flowers about to burst out.

Will Reports:  Not a lot done this month as have been busy catching up with things at home and Kevin’s gone wandering. Did check some traps a couple of times and had a couple of track patrols. Once after some rain and with heaps of branches overhanging one section of track, did some pruning and got quite wet in the process. No wonder any track walker was walking up Henry Road! Some quail and pheasant about, along with a couple of pigeons. Tuis and Bellbirds have started feeding on the flax flowers with the odd weka turning up for a look. Someone (Peter Wilks?) has sprayed the gorse on Henry Road to Grassy Saddle, thanks for that. Have now noticed that some kawakawa is dying in the gully, just like in Jimmy Lee Creek (as notified by Des Henry awhile ago).

One time I stopped for morning tea and a bite to eat and sitting on a log decided a little whisky would be good to warm the internals. Hey, it was a cold morning, even though the sun was shining.  I finished my drink with a few drops of whisky still at the bottom of the mug. Sitting still and absorbing the warmth from the morning sun, I caught something out in the corner of my eye. It was a mouse which had climbed up the onto the log and then ran about the picking up crumbs from my biscuit. It climbed the mug, fell inside, and sucked up the whisky. Then it began dashing around the mug until it knocked it over, stood up unsteadily on its hind legs, brushed back its whiskers, clenched its front paws, and said, “Now whesh’s that damned cat!”  Maybe we should be putting out little tumblers of whisky, as I’ve not seen a cat up there since?

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