> What was that?

Help needed! What the hell is this animal making a dash across my garden the other night? Caught on the infra-red night camera at 1.34am. I’ve never seen it before and haven’t seen it since!

All suggestions gratefully received. I know what I “think” it is…. but I’m keeping stoom until I’ve heard some of your imaginative ideas…. Thanks šŸ™‚

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12 thoughts on “> What was that?

  1. Before I saw the above comments my guess was an escaped ferret. Polecats are possible but less likely in a built-up area I guess. Sadly this is unlikely to be doing any good to the “wildlife” you really want.

  2. I just looked up a recent JNCC report on the expansion of the Polecat’s range in mainland Britain. Quote “genetic work indicates that polecats and ferrets are so closely related as to be regarded simply as two forms of the same species”. Which of these it is will therefore be very very hard to tell.

  3. It looks very much like a young ferret, I had a ferret some time ago that was found wandering around the streets in daylight,
    it was the way it moved that reminded me of the ferret.

  4. A weasel’s weasily recognisable, while a stoat’s stotally different!

    A stoat has a black tipped tail but my eyesight is not that good to tell so I will say weasel. Happy birthday to your husband – are you really Paula’s daughter in law? If so you are very lucky.

  5. I agree with Ron on this one: the movement is very ferret-like with the loop to the gait. Weasels are very tiny – almost mouse-sized, and that seemed bigger, and I have never seen them loop along like that – they seem to “dart” more.

  6. Oooh, can I come and have a sniff?? Just to be different mummy says mink.. now that you have your own pond you might get all sorts moving in.. but it looks very ferrety. I’d be very happy to come and chase it though.

  7. Hmmmm….. šŸ˜¦
    As I can’t see the video from the computer I’m on at the mo, I’ll be a “bit different” and suggest the myth-tery critter is, in fact, a marsupial mole…..
    šŸ˜‰

  8. Hi Jane,

    I will plump for a ferret (polecat type). True polecats are difficult to prove, but do have characteristically black guard hairs (longer hairs than the rest of the pelt) on their back. The light is not great, but this one does seem to be rather pale for a true polecat. That said, there are polecats in the area – the stuffed one at Beacon Hill was picked up on the A31 about 5 miles away……….

  9. Hi. Thanks everyone for your ID’s…. I must admit I think it’s an escaped ferret. Could be a polecat, but without catching it and extracting it’s DNA I don’t think we will ever know. I haven’t seen it since, so maybe it was just passing through. It was definately in a hurry. Thanks again it’s been really interesting reading all your comments. Jane. PS A marsupial mole eh Doug! now that would make a good record for the Dorset Environmental Records Centre…

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