Well, yesterday after the events that unfolded in front of the camera trap, I could not have hoped for anything more exciting than what I had already seen in daylight. Exciting was perhaps not the right word for what happened last night, but perhaps just downright weird. Not only had another interesting array of wildlife been attracted to the unfortunately deceased bunny, but what some of the wildlife were doing was, to my mind, very strange indeed!
First on the scene, as expected, the Carrion crow, pecking away and getting the last night-time snack before bed at around 4:30 pm. It was interesting to see another rabbit, alive, hoping around nearby, but so far, nothing out of the ordinary.
Next, Mr. Fox arrived at 4:48 pm! He seemed quite pleased with this find, sniffing away, marking his scent, and scurrying off the scene before returning to mark his scent once more. Not much time was spent filling his belly, presumably hoping to save his appetite for later. With the territory marked, he presumed dinner was safe for the evening from any other scavenger.
Next to arrive, a Fallow deer, bold as brass, and as curious as a cat. I was thrilled with these shots taken at around 6:00 pm, with her sniffing at the camera, showing every beautiful angle of that slender nose, and staring into the infrared glow.
Clearly, after a few minutes, the scout deer had determined the camera trap to be of negligible importance, as the big guns were next to come in with a clear motive in mind. A herd of over ten individuals was sniffing and nuzzling around the rabbit carcass – but why were they interested in that?! At first, I thought perhaps the scent laid down by the fox may have been of interest to the deer, but as the next few seconds of footage played on, I realized I had interpreted this entirely wrong. I suppose, if a crow, a magpie, a buzzard, and a fox can enjoy this offering, then why can’t they as well?
I could not believe my eyes as I watched the next minute or so of video, showing the deer munching away, sniffing, and probably even enjoying their evening feast. The poor fox returned later to try his snack and was seemed quite disheartened to find most of his dinner gone. It should have been to no surprise that by the next morning the entire rabbit had been shared between the area’s inhabitants, and provided a valuable dinner to last each animal through the cold night.