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A spooky sound at night...

42 comments


The other night, I was awoken by a sound…I thought it sounded a bit like a puppy yelping, but it was weird, like a ‘cry’. It seemed to move very fast behind my house and into the distance…it lasted only …maybe three seconds and was gone. I thought perhaps it was an Oyster Catcher as they sometimes cry at night, and went back to sleep.

Now, over the past few weeks I have thought that something was eating my log edging in the front garden. I dismissed it really as a figment of my imagination.. The log edging is very decrepit and I thought it was just rotting and being eaten by the woodlice.

BUT….that doesn’t explain the big chunks of bark on the grass…and….

Today I was admiring my Fritillaria meleagris ..I have two clumps. One looks like this.

I went to look at the other one….and…..

Now, this can’t be a rabbit, as nothing else in the garden has been chewed. Just this clump of frits. and a lot of the wooden edging. And what is living in the wooden edging? Well, thousands of little insects of course, mostly woodlice. So, do you think I might have a visiting Fox chewing at the wood to get the insects?

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Comments

 

Most definitely a fox its a weird cry they make, think the vixen shouts for her mate or maybe it is the other way around. Sammie was woken by the same noise one night when she was here, she thought someone was hurt outside. Horrible noise they make. The nibbled plant -could be a rabbit that is eating your plants, or even a deer, think a camera stationed on the front of the cottage is called for. One of the perils of living in the countryside. You can set live catchers and then get Scott to put them into the woods somewhere else. What time of night was it when you heard the noise? If it was not in the early hours maybe put out all the lights and sit and watch secretly from the window to catch the little perishers in the act or let Molly loose on them, she would sort the rabbits out. lol.

15 Apr, 2014

 

Hi Karen ..
do you have muntjac deer locally ?

15 Apr, 2014

 

She would! I'm glad you think I sleuthed correctly. It was in the very early hours I think Mum, but can't be sure. Scott says he didn't hear it, but I think he must have because he went to the loo just after it stopped. He just can't remember it. I suppose there's no way of discouraging the foxy blighter is there? I really don't think it was a rabbit Mum as absolutely no damage on anything else..not the herbs even...and this clump of Frits is right beside the hedge where the worst of the damage is on the wooden logs. I think Foxy had a nibble...maybe even a cub! I haven't seen a single rabbit around here..ever. I saw more when we lived on the estate! I think the farmers have got them pretty much under control, and of course the fields around us are all extremely cultivated, almost right up to the edges, so they have nothing to eat really. BTW, our field has been sown with spring Barley and Mike is going to put winter Barley after that, so we will have a green field this winter. Scott is putting up wire mesh all around the inside of the hedge to keep the dogs safe, so hopefully that will deter anything coming in...once he's finished it. Still get little field mice holes and caught one in the loft again last week, but none since, thankfully. Perhaps there are Rabbits around, but I would have thought they would have gone for a lot more of my plants.....oh, I hope they don't come!

15 Apr, 2014

 

Terra...not that I know of. We have Roe Deer in the hills at the front of us though. I saw two, not long after we moved. But I doubt they would cross the road...there's a lot of space and food for them in the hills...they wouldn't have any reason to come down here...but you never know do you. Beautiful creatures. I must ask my neighbour if there are Muntjac. Do you think they would gnaw the wood?

15 Apr, 2014

 

Foxes like insects of course, here you smell a musky smell where they have been, oh and piles of poop......chilli flakes may deter them, I have used it on rabbits, they soon learn!

15 Apr, 2014

 

What a good idea Pam...thank you. No, haven't seen any poop...no, wait, I did see poop a few days ago...thought that's weird..how did this dog poop get right over here (my dogs don't go in this part of he garden as it isn't secure)....doh....I must start paying more attention!! No musky smell that I can detect, but its cold here and harder to detect any scents. I will keep my nose alert though!

15 Apr, 2014

 

Oh no Karen your poor plants.

I remember our 2nd home there was a farmers field opposite and all my crocus was a meal for the rabbits.

No problem where I am now and I am still in the country.

15 Apr, 2014

 

Oh dear Karen . . . it does seem very likely that the fox is guilty of both the 'barking' noise and the nibbling. We have Muntjacs here, and they love fresh foliage, but don't appear to nibble wood. I do know how disheartening it can be, but you always manage to keep cheerful . . .

. . . so I've just put a blog on, hoping it will make you smile some more :))

15 Apr, 2014

 

Hope you catch the culprit Karen we had foxes in the woods when lived at the cottage and they did sometimes venture into the garden! We had a little field mouse in the lounge one night last week, we couldnt catch it but we opened all the doors into the garden the next day and the little blighter hasnt been seen since, just hope he escaped to safety;0)

15 Apr, 2014

 

Fox poo is black Karen if that is of help - what a subject to be on lol :O)

15 Apr, 2014

 

Depends what he's eaten...... euw......
I think its the dog fox thats smelly

you can use hot chilli powder rather than flakes if you wish, I had rabbits excavating my pots and tubs, big ones....they destroyed all the plants, the powder washes off in the rain but one packet of dried flakes hadn't been dried properly ,
yes you guessed it big troughs sprouting chilli seedlings..... thankfully they died off in the winter!

15 Apr, 2014

 

Thanks so much everyone. I shall be out there shortly with some hot chilli powder! Off to look at Sheila's blog now. Carole, I hope that mouse doesn't pop up when you're watching telly later! ;) xx

15 Apr, 2014

 

Lol me too!!

15 Apr, 2014

 

I actually fed a few crumbs to a field mouse this evening, Pansy, but he was outside on a gravel herb bed next to decking, so was happily darting out, then back under the deck . . . he seemed to be collecting chive leaves, perhaps for nesting material??

15 Apr, 2014

 

Ah, Sheila! That's cute. They do love decking don't they!

15 Apr, 2014

 

We also have Foxes living in the wooded areas nearby Karen,and we hear that weird noise a lot,usually just before we go to bed,and I used to think it was an animal in pain..I got quite upset listening to it..and then,as time went by,most of our neighbours and us too,have seen it doing it's nightly rounds,,always the same route..( a lot of us aren't good sleepers )..luckily we have had no damage done..just the odd dead shrew,without it's tail ..yuk..on MY lawn..and a half eaten flip flop...strange Dessert eh ? Lol.

15 Apr, 2014

 

Some days I could go a Flip flop! ;))

15 Apr, 2014

 

Hi Karen, it's one of the weirdest sounds in the country isn't it, we get it a lot around here, Derek.

15 Apr, 2014

 

It is Derek...very spooky! Hot Chilli Powder deployed! Thanks everyone! :))

15 Apr, 2014

 

Hope you man to deter the culprit, what ever it is. I've read that Pheasants are fond of Fritillaria flower buds.

15 Apr, 2014

 

And yes pheasants make a terrible noise to .

15 Apr, 2014

 

Lol,I'll be in touch if I find the other half ! :o)

15 Apr, 2014

 

I agree with your Mum sounds like a fox, we are plagued with them here, keep you awake at night with their screaming, most of are neighbours are using (and us) a deterrent, high pitched noise and strobe lighting!! seems to do the trick.......they are looking for insects, their poo is horribly smelly, not like the badger. Sorry but the netting won't keep them out, they can leap over a six foot hedge!! you do not have to live in the country to have these problems, some of the neighbours even have the deer in their garden, and this is living on the coast!! good luck, as long as you don't have rabbits to cope with..........lol

15 Apr, 2014

 

Angie, I don't think they'll leap over our hedge...it's wide and would tear their tummies to shreds. It's like the forest in Snow White! Lol!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Last year we had a hole no bigger than 6 inches in diameter, the darned fox got through that. Our fence is wired to over 6 ft tall they get in any where they can squeeze through. Leap and climb and nothing will stop them. We have a terrific problem with them. Lovely to look at but hated for what they do, they do not just kill for food they kill for fun. Anyone with stock will tell you the same, they just go on a killing spree. The urban fox is becoming a nuisance too. I shall never forget seeing them eating fish and chips out of a paper bag that someone had discarded on Cleethorpes beech, quite amazing to see them so close to the seaside. I had never imagined that they would get that close to people but they do. Obviously the sand dunes make it easier for them to dig out and make their dens in. Of course the rubbish that the trippers leave behind is their dinner for the day.

16 Apr, 2014

 

The fox got all my neighbours chickens, the run is moved daily as it has been for years :0 (

If the wildlife wants to get in it will, rabbits will tunnel under, and foxy will use it too.....

if you get trouble from rats (I try to comfort myself they are field rats, not sewer rats....) my farmer neighbour showed us a safe control, you take a longish piece of drain pipe and lay it on the ratrun then take the tray of bait and push it to the middle of the pipe, birds and domestic pets then can't get at it. It cleared our problem near the bird table.
you have to be alert for dead ones though as they are poisnous for anything that eats it.

its still worth living in the countryside Karen, jut a few different challenges :0))

16 Apr, 2014

 

You can buy poisons though that only kill once, or so I am informed. I suppose they are more expensive but if you have animals and pets then probably worth investigating. I agree the countryside is still worth the problems that pop up from time to time. Much better to be out in the open spaces and not getting the hassle of noisey neighbours. Wouldn't swap it for the world.

16 Apr, 2014

 

Same here xxx

16 Apr, 2014

 

Goodness! What a lot for me to worry about! Lol! Mum, I think the Fox will be a lot more motivated to break in for your birds than he will to get at my wood lice...mind you, I suppose it depends how hungry he is!

Pam, we haven't seen any signs of rats. They will be there of course, but as long as they don't bother us....

I will soon be stopping feeding the wild birds for the summer, so there won't be anything to attract them, or the mice after that. The birds will have to eat insects once the temps warm up. It's freezing here today. We spent four hours putting together the dog run, and the roof doesn't fit! It looks a bit of a mess. We're hoping it will stretch out a bit when the creases come out. If not, we'll wait for a warm sunny day and stretch it out then! Main thing is the dogs can't get out of it....yet!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Foxes don't usually nibble plants (according to a friend), so maybe a pheasant was making a meal of your Fritillaries, and a fox went for the pheasant?!!

16 Apr, 2014

 

I'd love one of those wildlife cameras .....its quite a tale you're weaving Sheila :0))

16 Apr, 2014

 

Yeah, I go with fox, we have many where I live.

16 Apr, 2014

 

Sheila, I hear pheasants calling all the time...you might be spot on!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Well - that'll be a first!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Sorry but the fox cubs will pull plants up to play with them....take shoes watering cans, garden implements, my OH found a lovely gardening fork much better than the one he owned.....lol. Such fun!!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Now you need to buy a wildlife camera and find out exactly what's causing the bother :)

16 Apr, 2014

 

Just exactly what I was thinking Scottish. But if it is a Fox, he's got a very hot tongue now!! :)) In fact, I bet he's out there hunting for some natural yoghurt!

16 Apr, 2014

 

Had a look at wildlife cameras...about a hundred pounds at least....thinking of how many plants I could buy with that.....but looking at wildlife would be a lot of fun....hmmm....

16 Apr, 2014

 

That is a lot of plants, I agree. Maybe something for the Christmas list :)

16 Apr, 2014

 

Great idea Scottish!

17 Apr, 2014

 

Oh my !!!!, I know I live on the outskirts of town and we did have a fox visiting last year, didn't appear this winter thank goodness but you lot have put me off dreaming of a cottage out in the countryside, lol.....
Karen I feel sure that Scott will be pleased to treat you to a wildlife camera, tell him its at the top of next xmas list........

21 Apr, 2014

 

Lol...funny, my friend said the same thing, but it certainly doesn't put me off. It's part of living in the country. I wouldn't have chickens though....the Fox would have them, no bother, and that would really upset me.

22 Apr, 2014

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