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Go to Top Muntjac, Moorhen and Heron

Posted: 10 April 2022

I did consider excluding all the Muntjac clips from this video as we see them so consistently the clips fail to offer anything new. However, a change of camera angles does reveal something I hadn't realised. Again, it may be the heron that offers the most interest this week. Certainly they're almost rivalling the Muntjac in terms of use of our bridge.

Go to Top 0:00 - Monday 11:53

The video starts with a young Muntjac that has just crossed the bridge, captured at 11:53 last Monday morning. That is followed by mother and young captured at 06:32 the following morning.

Go to Top 0:11 - Wednesday 22:02

On Wednesday I changed the camera angle and at 22:02 a male Muntjac is seen going the other way across the bridge. Later that night, at 01:57, a mother and offspring make the same crossing. Both these clips show that the deer do not use the planks sticking out of each side of the bridge as a step, as I had always assumed they did. Judging from all the marks on the deck of the bridge I have to assume that they find the planks too slippery and find it safer to step higher than risk slipping as they climb onto the bridge.

Go to Top 0:50 - Thursday 10:19

We move on to Thursday at 10:19 to see a heron make a considered approach to the bridge. In contrast to the deer the heron does use the planks as a step onto the bridge's deck.

Go to Top 1:50 - Thursday 10:50

Next the video moves to 10:50 that morning, when we still see the heron near the bridge. Then two things happen. A Moorhen emerges onto the far bank of the dyke, quickly followed by a female Muntjac entering the bottom of the frame. This seems to spook the heron, who drops his neck and moves away rapidly out of view. We are left with just the moorhen to watch until the sun comes out and a young Muntjac arrives. Perhaps, rather than the mother it was the more unpredictable movement of the young Muntjac that scared off the heron? Once more we are left with the moorhen to watch.

We skip a few minutes and the heron returns and hops onto the bridge. This time it swings its body into a more vertical angle making it appear to squat closer to the ground while also keeping its neck bent. At 15:33 another heron is captured as it flies through the area scanned for motion by the camera.

Then, at 19:30, we see a Muntjac mount the bridge, avoiding the step that the heron used. You'll probably miss another deer, already on the far bank move into view from behind a tree stump. Our final clip this week, before the camera was moved off the Poor's Allotment, runs for a full minute. It shows a Muntjac sauntering across the bridge and, eventually, browsing the ground on the embankment close to the dinghy used for lake maintenance work.

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