WATCH: East Lothian cameraman captures nocturnal footage of reclusive creatures
Some of Scotland’s most reclusive wild animals have been captured on camera in East Lothian’s Gifford Community Woodland, acting like stars of a Wind in the Willows adaptation.
The community woodland team were joined by local mammal recorder Graham Checkley back in Gifford Woods recently to monitor some nocturnal activity.
Bringing along his trusty trail camera, Mr Checkley captured more than a few of the woods’ night time inhabitants.
He said: “If you walk through a woodland at dusk or dawn you may be lucky enough to encounter a fox going about their business. But most of the mammal activity takes place at dead of night, and that's why a trail camera is so useful; it operates in infrared and is motion triggered, so it doesn't bother the animals at all.
“My first camera deployment was in the Speedy Wood, where I recorded fox and roe deer – then I checked out the Fawn Wood and recorded badger, brown hare, fox and what looked like wood mice.
“It's intriguing to see the number of species that can coexist on a small section of a woodland trail. You can see pheasants at dawn, mice at night, and foxes at the odd hours in between – survival is so often a matter of timing.
“But there's also the question of daytime survival. Badgers have sets, foxes have lairs and mice have nests, but brown hare and roe deer simply hunker down and try to be invisible.
“That's what makes visitor behaviour so important.”
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