Today I took 3 of our regular volunteers out to the north of the reserve to re-survey some plots in grassy habitat, to look for harvest mouse nests.
During the winter of 21-22, the Mammal Society asked people UK wide to go out and survey for harvest mice nests. It’s now time to head out again to find the nests that were built throughout 2022. This ‘National Harvest Mouse Survey’ is helping to build a picture of where they are found, their associated habitats, and will provide an idea of how much they have declined and what work needs to be done to protect them. To find out more have a look at the link below, and if you want to go out and survey in your local area please do!
We found 3 nests today, all woven into the grassy stalks and still suspended. One was the size of a golf ball – this is a solitary nest. Then another beautiful, newer nest that was much larger – this one was definitely a breeding nest. Then in another plot we found an older nest hidden away which could have been from spring 2022, or more likely we think could be from 2021.
We would like to survey more of the reserve to see whether harvest mice are present, and it was fantastic to find these nests in the same plot that was most fruitful last year. We need to ensure that the habitat doesn’t get encroached by brambles, so this will probably be one of the winter jobs for our conservation volunteer groups.