Posts Tagged ‘camouflage’

Baby carrier and camouflage umbrella - you saw it here first!

Things have been quiet around here for a while.  Actually, that isn’t quite true.  I haven’t been out much lately, but things have been busy at home.  Having a small baby takes up a lot of time, but things are starting to ease up a little.  I’ve also been busy with DIY in the house.  In particular I’ve been restoring our living room door.

This may not sound like a big task, but it’s turned into one.   I thought the door was a fairly naff 1970s one that looked out of place in a 140 year old house.  After some investigation it turns out that it was the original plank-built door that dates back to the building of the house in 1868, but the previous owners had stuck on plywood on both sides to make it look like a 1970s one.  A major campaign of reconstruction and painting, and it’s now back in its proper place – blocking the huge draft into the living room.  The practical upshot of all this is that we can now turn on the heating in the room, so at least we’re a bit warmer.

The other thing that has kept me indoors is the weather.  Like most people we’ve had a lot of heavy rain.  I don’t mind rain too much myself, but it makes it almost impossible to go for a walk with Scarlett.  In her baby carrier she’s exposed to the elements.  I can keep her warm with fleece suits, but I can’t keep her dry.  I don’t think they make gore-tex baby suits yet.

But I think I’ve found the answer.  Being a proper English gentleman I have taken to walking about the countryside with an umbrella.  But not just any umbrella.  I’ve found an American one in Mossy Oak camouflage.

Mossy Oak camouflage umbrella

OK.  So this is probably totally unnecessary.  Having a camouflage umbrella is taking the whole ‘blending into the background’ thing a little bit too far.  Who cares – I like it.

And when you think about it, perhaps it isn’t such a daft idea after all.  I like to think that it isn’t so much an umbrella as a portable hide or blind.  If ever I need to get out of sight of the wildlife, all I need to do is to pop up the umbrella and hide behind it – hey presto – virtually an invisibility cloak!

Whatever.  It means I’ve got more chance of getting outside with my daughter over the winter, and that’s the important thing.

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First of all, thanks Ghillie and Josie for your comments on the last post.  Sorry I haven’t got around to replying sooner.  The consensus is that the badger at the Pine Tree sett could well be Nick, but I guess we’ll never know for sure.  What I need is some sort of badger face recognition software…

I’ve just come back from a peaceful evening at the Pine Tree sett.  It was totally undisturbed by badgers, anyway.

A badgers-eye view - full camouflage

A badgers-eye view - full camouflage

I was making another attempt to photograph the badger there.  Everything was right.  The wind was coming from a slightly different direction so I didn’t have to sit in the nettles – I had a perfect view of the sett entrance from directly downwind.  I was dressed up in my best camouflage outfit and my silhouette was well hidden by the bank of earth.  I was in a comfortable position and I sat still for an hour and a half until it got too dark for pictures.  In short, it was perfect, except that no badger showed itself.

To be honest, it’s a complex sett.  There are at least two active holes a hundred yards apart and (it seems) only one badger.  It could well have been in the other hole and I’d never have known.

I don’t regard evenings like this as wasted, not in the slightest.  It is enjoyable to sit there on a comfortable bed of leaves and listen to the wind in the trees and the owls hooting.  There’ll be plenty of chances to get to grips with the badgers again in the future.

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Today I bought a new camouflage shirt to wear in the summer when my jacket gets too hot.

Everyone knows that your clothes should be a drab green or brown (or in my case a mixture of the two with pictures of leaves on) so that you blend into the background and the wildlife can’t see you.

While I was out I also bought some batteries for my red LED torch, because everyone knows that badgers cannot see red light.

Hang on a minute.  These two statements don’t really go together.  If badgers don’t see the colour red, does that mean that red is the best colour for badger watching clothes?  Why didn’t I just buy a red shirt and trousers?  I’d be invisible to badgers then.  I wonder if anyone has ever tried this?

The truth is that camouflage is a complicated subject, and I’m sure a lot of it comes down to personal preference.  Is camouflage really necessary for watching badgers and other wildlife?  I honestly don’t know.  All I can say is that I wear it because I feel more confident that I can’t be seen, and that confidence is important if you’re going to spend hours in a tree waiting for a wary animal to show itself.

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