It has been an unusual year for Dormice in the forests with long winter and a very dry summer. Perhaps because of the warm weather we were finding few animals in boxes over the summer and we're looking forward to our September box check.
As a trainee there is a lot to learn and it’s important to get experience of handling as many adults and young as possible. We approached the boxes with apprehension this September as we already had to replace a box that had been pulled off the tree in August.
We were saddened and depressed as we walked the grid finding more and more boxes pulled down and couldn’t work out the reason why some had been left. In all, 8 boxes were removed completely, 1 smashed up and 2 taken down but left on the floor. These both had nests in!
On the up side we found 2 pipistrelle bats in one box and three boxes with adult and young dormice in them - from newborn ‘pinkies’ to wide awake juveniles jumping around.
Although the monitoring site is visible from the footpath there had been little problems since it was set up with 200 boxes in 2005.
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Every donation, no matter it's size, will go a long way in helping us to protect local wildlife such as these dormice.