A while back I posted about a water vole that was swimming at the back of the boat.
I thought it had been paddling in Eastney pond and swum up to the boat. Well, I think it had actually come from inside my dinghy.
I did have my suspicions last time, but on Saturday I found out where the furry thing came from. I went down to the boat and as usual turned the dinghy over. I usually wait half way with the dinghy on its side so any water can drain out.
Instead this time a rather plump water vole dropped out of one of the access hatches to the buoyancy tanks and scarpered off to hide under Jim's dinghy. The hatch covers have never been fitted as long as I've had the dinghy. It looks like I'm going to have to get some and fit them so that voley can't make a nest inside.
It also explains the quite ragged painter that I replaced last month. Looks like voley chewed it up to make a nest.
I'm not sure he's found the ideal vole habitat, I don't think a dinghy is suitable and neither is the salt water environment and the shingle beach. I guess he'll have a hard time trying to make a burrow anywhere there, although there's a soil bank by Southsea Marina or the University buildings he should really be .burrowing into. We do have a vole colony in Havant, but he's over the other side of Langstone Harbour. Literally miles away.
I bet when I turned the dinghy over he was wondering what the hell was going on, just as I did when he dropped out of the side of the dinghy.