Tuesday, June 21, 2016

And the fox takes its toll!

This year is rapidly turning into an exceptionally weird year.  We have our second litter up now. It might have emerged yesterday, but we learned about it when someone saw a fox carrying a marmot pup away from the RMBL Library. In town there's been a nesting fox pair for over a decade and the foxes feed their kits on marmot pups (yes, foxes have to eat too).

The litter of at least 4 surviving pups has emerged from a burrow beneath the Library porch. Two litters this early in June is extremely rare in the past 54 years. I thought that this was the earliest, but Ken just checked his early records and found evidence of one litter emerging on the 13th, 14th, 15th, 18th,  and 19th of June.

Regardless of the precedence, our 'pup season' has begun early--too early--and we're now madly trying to spend more time in the field looking for pup emergence (they usually emerge later in the AM). Meanwhile, it's HOT--very hot--and we've ceased trapping adults later in the day.  Oh well...live and learn and there's always something to learn here.  Marmoteering is, after all, a 'full-employment scheme'!



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  2. The groundhog pups on our Michigan property emerged on May 15th, also somewhat early.