We have got another trouble maker. A fox lives somewhere in the woodcock strip and he has been making his presence felt over the past few days. First, he stole a rabbit leg from a fencepost above the Multi Larsen Trap while I was building a fence a few hundred yards away. Most galling of all is the knowledge that, in order to steal the leg, he would have had to have climbed onto the bonnet of my car. I took it all in good heart and was impressed at his brass-necked daring, but when I went up to the strip again today to clear some more trees, my opinion changed.
Feathers were strewn across a patch of bilberry. They were chocolate brown with silvery grey undersides, and they had been nipped off as if by scissors. Evidence of a fox kill. My heart skipped a beat when I thought that the rogue had eaten one of my grouse, and it was not much of a relief to discover a long, narrow beak amongst the wreckage of feathers. The head had been entirely chewed away, but it was obvious that a perfectly good snipe was now swilling around the stinking guts of some wretched, self satisfied fox. I declared war on him then and there.