Monday, June 22, 2009

Germany Post 5

This week on Thursday we put up our first electric fence around a wheat field. The seeds are hitting the stage where they are sweet to the taste and all animals are lured to feed. Places where wild boar are spotted easily especially if they come into the fields in groups because they often dig around in the ground where they feed. The difference between wild boar and deer can also be told by how the crops look that have been fed on. Wild boar grab onto plants and shear of everything edible by pulling it off, whereas the deer simply snip of the tops of the grain they seek.
In my first blog I wrote that the nature preserve I work on is 250 acres large. It is actually 250 hectare which is roughly 2.5 the amount of an acre so around 625 acres. It is a wet swampy area surrounded by a loop section of the old Rhein. The Rhein is one of Germany’s largest rivers and was straightened out as Germany’s population grew to make it easier to navigate. This old loop section surrounding our land still often floods with water that saturates the ground and gives it its swampy appearance, especially in the lower lying areas. It also makes for an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes. Other animals I have seen since I have gotten here are hedge hogs, hares, European badgers, red foxes, reh deer, wild boar along with a variety of birds including storks and a large population hawks.
The European badgers and red foxes both dig deep mounds in the dirt, sometimes even residing in the same mound. I’m excited to see what other animals I will spot before my internship is thru.

Herr Brecht is excited about my data collecting project for the wild game clocks. I hope it will provide him with some valuable insight on where, when and how the wild boar are moving across his land. But I will wait at least until the end of the month for my first analysis so I have a good amount of data to work with.

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