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dpack

mouse behavior, cargo cult ?

for a while i have been hosting sammy mouse and family in the woodshed.

the last 4 times i have provided a container of seeds etc they have taken the food and filled the container ( bag or coffee tin ) with sticks and bits of bark.

is this a developing cargo cult or is it normal long tailed behaviour to fill a food source with sticks and bark?

Rolling Eyes Laughing Cool Question
NorthernMonkeyGirl

They're just paying their grocery bill.
Slim

Maybe they're hoping you won't notice the swap out?
dpack

it could be either

i cannot see an advantage to collecting food and then filling the place it came from, in terms of concealing a resource cover it between shifts makes sense but the last one is a full on stuffing of an empty can Shocked

paying the bill or concealing the "theft" both make sense,sort of Laughing

as it worked first time with just a few sticks perhaps they are now going for the full stuffing in the hope of full cans? it seems a bit complex for mouse culture but it is a simple explanation of the observation.

they have me a bit confused but very likely to give more food to see what happens so it is working out ok for them Laughing
Slim

Multiple containers of varying sizes? Maybe you can get them to sort their returns for you.

I picture you doing something like this by the end of the month: https://youtu.be/iGXYZwZEZa0
dpack

praps not Laughing

i might wire em for video though
buzzy

I seem to recall a colleague describing to me an experiment in which, for some reason, he was putting out small dishes of mouse food in a field (of wheat, I think), and he would find that the mice (or possibly voles, he said) would cover up the food with plant debris. He thought maybe this was to hide the food from others. (Sorry my description of this is somewhat vague, but it is many years ago when this conversation took place).

Perhaps there are two things going on:

1) concealment
2) removal

and number 1 has gone a bit over the top.

Mice are great hoarders - you may well find, some time, where they are storing the food.

Henry


Henry
frewen

I have this image of mice making craven images of Dpack now Laughing
dpack

they have several granaries that i know of
the concealment until they have relocated it all makes sense
the amount of concealment must take nearly as much effort as caching the goodies and seems a bit ott considering the gifts are delivered in their wood and compost store safe from rivals and birdies.
wellington womble

I wouldn't put anything past them!
Fee



i might wire em for video though


This! Laughing

(Hello dpack!)
dpack

umm i probably have enough bits n bobs to knock up a suitable camera system.
buzzy

If you manage to film Wood Mice using voles as slave labour, do let us know! Laughing

Henry
dpack

they have militarised the hounds as a cat deterrent.

i am pretty sure we don't have any voles round here, plenty not too far away so perhaps they could obtain some.
Fee

Laughing
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