dimanche 17 octobre 2010

C is for Coypu

On apprend a tout age — you live and learn

Shortly after we moved in, our British neighbour told us several times that there was a coypu living in the river at the bottom of our gardens. Not being too sure what a coypu looks like, we nodded wisely and kept a look out every time we sat by the river.  No sign of any coypu.

The other day, though, Gavin came back from a walk to say he’d seen an otter in the river. This was exciting news, as the only wild otter we’d ever seen was a few years ago in the Lake District in the UK. Back to river watch.

Then our new (French) neighbour came round. (The coypu fan had since sold the house to buy a boat on which to sail the British waterways, probably hunting for coypus.) Our neighbour was talking about the fact that the river level was low as work was being done to clean it further upstream. She was horrified because she’d seen couple of water rats on the opposite bank. Sitting by the river later that day, Gavin said he could see the otter. You’ve guessed it, it was a water rat. I’m now beginning to have my doubts about this mysterious coypu…

Incidentally, our neighbour has promised to lend us a book on French wildlife. I think it’s long overdue.

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