This book aims to help us reconnect with the polecat as it repopulates the modern landscapes of Britain. After explaining how we so nearly lost the polecat, it tells the story of its recovery and describes efforts to understand polecat behaviour, including the author’s own radio-tracking study in the muddy, rat-infested farmyards favoured by ‘his’ polecats. It unpicks the confusing relationship between polecats and ferrets, explores the challenges of studying a secretive, nocturnal mammal that leaves few distinctive signs, examines the role of wild rabbits as the perfect polecat prey and providers of polecat resting sites, and celebrates the contributions of amateur naturalists in collecting road casualties to monitor the polecat’s changing distribution.
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