Water vole

Water vole, Arvicola amphibius, single mammal by water, Warwickshire, December 2015. Canon EOS 1dx. 800mm lens and flash.1/200th at f9. 800 iso. Flash 1 2/3 thirds underexposed.

Such a common mammal when I was a child. They would be seen on every walk in the countryside and were very close to my home. Now I have to go twenty miles to the nearest colony in Warwickshire or to another site in Worcestershire. The site I have chosen to photograph them is a thriving colony and I have been many times already, but only taken pictures twice. At this time of year there is no light reaching the bank so I am using flash or waiting for cloudy bright conditions. In the spring I would expect the sun light to reach one stretch of the bank in the morning and evenings, but that is a while away yet. Apples are the main attraction and they seem to pick up the smell of them quickly when I put a cut apple down.

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