Press Release: Otterly Marvellous Markenfield
It was a bright, sunny spring day – the kind that Wordsworth would have loved – the golden daffodils nodding gently towards the moat; and there in the car park, glinting in the sunshine… a fish! Or to be precise – part of a fish. Not the sort of thing that one normally finds in the car park but, presuming it had been dropped by a passing Heron, we didn’t think too much of it… until the next day – when there was another one… and then another one.
Soon the orchard and surrounding fields were littered with fish – dragged from the moat, partially eaten and then discarded. The first thought was a Fox. This was then replaced with the rather horrifying thought of Mink. All the while the fish were stacking up and all we found was a small number of footprints by the side of the moat.
And so it was that we came to borrow a Trail-Cam, only then were we to discover that the moat had a new inhabitant – an Otter.
He has been filmed on numerous occasions, in the Orchard, next to the house itself and on the water – sleek, graceful and absolutely ginormous!
Delight at the new arrival soon turned to horror however, when the fish supply began to dwindle and Roland the Black Swan became his next meal. “We were horrified” explains the Hall’s Owner, Lady Deirdre Curteis. “We have had Swans attacked by foxes before and therefore they slept on the water for their own safety – it never occurred to us that an Otter would take such a big and powerful bird. Sylvia, Roland’s surviving partner, has been temporarily removed for her own safety until the Otter’s food source has dried up and then we believe that it will move on. Sadly, for the first time ever, there won’t be Black Swans at the Hall when we open to the public on 30 April.”
What the Hall does have – all be it temporarily – is one of the UK’s most enigmatic and endangered mammals. Whilst we can’t guarantee that visitors will see one whilst doing the Moat Walk, there will be a display of otterly fascinating images and facts pertaining to our new lodger.
Markenfield will be open from 30 April to 15 May, and again from 11 to 26 June, from 2:00pm to 5:00pm each day (last entry 4:30pm). For further information please see markenfield.com or contact Sarah Robson on email@example.com or 01765 692303.