I know Jays bury acorns...

Posted by Graeme Lyons , Saturday 29 January 2011 15:51

...but what buries Jays? Giant carnivorous acorns? On a farm survey in Hampshire today I noticed this dead Jay, partially buried in a winter wheat field. Now, as you can see, the bird is partly buried on its back. The field was drilled back in the autumn and the bird doesn't look like it's been dead very long. I doubt that anyone would make such a botched attempt at burying a bird they had shot, it seems pointless. Carrion feeding insects are surely out at this time of year and this would be a bit of  a mission for them anyway. So what does that leave? Giant carnivorous acorns or more likely a Fox or some other carnivorous mammal but I have to say I don't really have a clue and I didn't have the time to dig up a frozen dead bird! Comments, as ever, are always welcome! Oh yeah, in terms of the survey, there was very little different from previous visits but I did see the most Brown Hares (4) I have seen on a single farm visit.

3 Response to "I know Jays bury acorns..."

Julian Black Says:

Some sort of Sexton beetle maybe? Small, but very good at burying :)

Graeme Lyons Says:

I did think of that but it's been so cold lately and the bird is relatively large compared to the usual small mammals and birds they tend to choose. I should have dug it up and had a look, I'll never know now!

Julian Black Says:

I'm sure you're right Graeme. I'd imagine any self respecting Sexton would still be safely ensconced wherever they overwinter, not as you say tackling such a large creature. Isn't carrion usually used to feed their larva too? Can't imagine they're feeling that spring-like just yet eh?

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