This water vole dwells just a few metres away from the top of the marsh in the rhynes (drainage ditches) of Portbury Wharf Nature Reserve.
This hamster-sized, furry bundle with shiny eyes of jet black beads was breakfasting on a succulent blade of grass by the bank.
The rhyne was covered with a thick green carpet of weed buoyed up by fallen reeds and “ratty” scurried across as if walking on water but was dunked unceremoniously whenever the carpet gave way. I left this wet and slightly disheveled water vole feasting on an extra chunky stem amongst the reeds. What a great way to start the day!
Unhappy with this watercolour sketch I used charcoal to liven it up . . .
. . . and continued using it for the other sketches.
This water vole was seen early on 12 May
Sketch Notes (top sketch)
Water vole: charcoal and graphite
Reeds : raw umber and permanent rose watercolours finished with charcoal
Weeds and grass: Supracolour watercolour pencils – jade green, lime green and light green.
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About Portbury Wharf Nature Reserve
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