The morning constitutional consists of a 45 minute walk around one of the big fields, depending on which one is fallow.
Our favourite field is this one:
Its the biggest of the three and has the advantage of a stream that runs along the bottom of it. Whilst walking, the three hounds and I regularly see deer, ducks, herons, coypu, buzzards, kestrels and the occasional wild boar.
As the grass has got higher though, we’ve had a new visitor to the field. A hare.
Every day we walk round and I’ll see his black tipped ears sticking up somewhere, as always, its the movement that gives him away first. The field is around 10 acres or so, fairly large for the locality, but every day I see him somewhere.
The grass is now so long that the little Yorkie can be completely hidden and the Cocker is hidden up to his belly. Only the big mongrel stands above the blades of grass and clover flowers.
They never see the hare, but they quite often smell it. I know when they’ve clocked the scent because the big dog stands stock still for a split second, ears up, tail up, static, then sprints across the field, quite often in the wrong direction. The other two follow like sheep. A period of canine lunacy then ensues where all three just sprint around the field, all pretending they’ve got the scent whilst not actually getting any closer to the long eared fur ball at all.
This morning was particularly good. The hare was only about 30 yards away. I saw his ears moving. First dog got the scent and ran, the wrong way. The hare looked about him, saw me, saw a couple of dogs heading the wrong way, hopped about 10 yards closer towards me then stopped and lay flat. I kept walking, not even looking at him and the hounds were sprinting all over the place. The Cocker (the only one to not actually be bothered at all with this hunting lark) must have passed him by about five yards, no further. The hare didn’t move, the Cocker didn’t miss a beat and we all met up happily by the side of the stream where there were a few fish gently waving their tails to maintain their position.
Its a good job we have supermarkets round here, I’d never survive if I had to rely on these three to provide me with dinner.