mouse marauders

November 26, 2010 · 2 comments

in Mammals and Marsupials

Wood Mouse - Apodemus sylvaticus   |   Mesmerising Moments

“The cat’s brought in a mouse,” the other half shouts.

“Is it alive?”

“I don’t know…er…yes.”

The cat sits in front of it. Nose to nose. The mouse is still. Cat reaches forward to play with its food. The brave little morsel swipes its nose with a tiny paw. Admiration swells.

Reaching slowly, carefully, I manage to grasp the mini-mammal from the claws of death and hold it gently in my warm hand.

For a moment I think it’s dead, so still it is. Then muscles in miniature legs power force through tiny feet on my fingers. I open my hand and we share a stare before he creeps away to the relative safety of the freezing undergrowth.

I have four cats. They often bring in birds and small mammals, sometimes alive, sometimes not. While I appreciate this a part of the cats nature, if their quarry is alive I will do my best to retrieve it and put it back outside, out of reach of marauding cats.

This provides a wonderful opportunity to get up close to these often hidden creatures. If the animals have already died I can get an even closer look. This is how I discovered mouse feet have tiny pads that look like pink ball bearings, their teeth are long, their eyes stick out (a lot) and they have soft fur (often full of mites).

Find out more about wood mice (Apodemus sylvaticus) on The Mammal Society website.

Photo credit: Hans Hillewaert

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Amy November 29, 2010 at 17:47

Lovely mesmerising moment.
I have two cats and have many mouse and bird rescues- oh and frogs.

wildelycreative November 29, 2010 at 17:50

Thanks, Amy.
We haven’t had any frogs yet, thankfully!

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