Midhurst Muntjac Deer

Muntjac Deer in Midhurst

I had a wonderful view of a Muntjac Deer on the way home this evening. The little chap – no bigger than a hare – was standing by the side of Bepton Road a mile south of Midhurst, so I pulled up to take a good look. He didn’t appear to be even slightly bothered by me, and wandered leisurely across the road into the bushes on the other side. They’re quite common around us – and more often heard rather than seen.

Muntjac are not native to the UK, and were introduced from China in the early 1900s to Woburn Park in Hertfordshire. Some of the deer jumped the fence, and today’s population of Muntjacs are nearly all descendants of these intrepid escapees!

Photo is from Creative Commons

More badger roadkill

Dead badger on the road

Badger knocked over on the road

A familiar sight on the verges in March. Badgers are so dopey at this time of the year – they just can’t help themselves from being knocked over. Sad news. Two more badgers squashed on the roads around Bepton last night – that’s five or six that have been killed in the last couple of weeks. Sad news for poor old Brock. But on a positive note, there are obviously plenty of badgers around the village if this many are getting run over.

The Independent reported that “Badgers have no natural predator, except possibly the motor car” according to farming minister David Heath as he bemoaned Britain’s rising badger population. Now the nation’s first-ever roadkill survey has confirmed his opinion that fast-moving vehicles are proving effective badger-culling machines.

Badgers are by far the most run-over animal in Britain, accounting for nearly a quarter of the country’s roadkill, according to Cardiff University. Pheasants are the second biggest casualty, followed by foxes, rabbits and pigeons. And did you know that West Sussex has emerged as the UK’s roadkill capital?