19 January 2014

It continues wet here with hardly a dry day since Christmas. wonderful for the condition of the river and the Tarn, but hardly conducive to working out doors.

I went up to the Tarn early last Sunday to gather information for a project we have in gestation and stood for a while on the board walk around the lodge looking out over the water. Out of the corner of mv left eye I caught a movement in the sedge along the water margin so stood still and waited.  Slowly advancing towards me was a dark shape keeping close to the water and seeming to slink in and out of the sedge clumps. It’s the first time that I have been within 10 feet of a wild dog otter and I’m not sure which of us was more surprised. We watched each other for a few moments before he got the wind up and very cautiously went up the bank and slid under the gate above the new picket gate we put in the year before last.

I have long known that the Tarn is used by otters as I regularly find spraint on boulders in the water margin.  Rarely do I find evidence of them feeding and this is the first time in twelve years that I have seen one and so close.  Unfortunately I couldn’t get the camera out in time to capture the proof.

Ian

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