It's not often I come home to find an adult bird in the house, seemingly unharmed, with all windows closed.
At our last house, it happened once, with a blackbird that had fallen down a chimney into the open fire (not lit I should add) and couldn't get out again.
Today, I walked into the kitchen after returning from work to find an adult starling staring down at me from the top of the kitchen cupboards.
Now at present, we don't have an open fire - indeed we have a closed chimney (although I hope to change that eventually) - and all windows were closed all day (Anna and I were at work) so I can only assume one of the spostles (cats) brought this bird in?
But what about the stoat?
Again, it's very rare for me to see any mustelid that isn't a badger out in the wild.
Occasionally I'll happen across a mink or even an otter and the last time I saw a weasel or a stoat is when I watched in amazement as a "caravan of stoats" (five...nose to tail) all bounced across the 18th fairway at Hazlemere golf club as I finished an early morning round of golf there..... when I was seventeen years old - thats a LONG time ago!
Today as I warmed down after a run by walking half a mile or so up a country lane, I watched a stoat carrying a rabbit kit in its gob across the lane and into the undergrowth right in front of me!
There are dozens and dozens of rabbit holes lining that particular country lane so I'm not surprised the slinky little mustelids are around, making quite a lot of hay I'm sure.
A real treat though this afternoon and a rare treat at that.
You know, to see such sights I think you need to be either a)in the countryside a lot and or b) very lucky.
I'm sure I fall into category b!