NY5612 : Rogues' Gallery, Turnmire Bottom

near to Shap, Cumbria, Great Britain

Rogues' Gallery, Turnmire Bottom
Rogues' Gallery, Turnmire Bottom
The Molecatcher
The molecatcher's handiwork. Impaling his catch is supposed to deter the moles coming back. I guess this is a superstition. But old habits die hard. A fence or hedge is the traditional place for the molecatcher to display his prowess although nowadays he's on the web LinkExternal link .

A traditional song about a molecatcher (from LinkExternal link )

At Manchester City the sign of the Plough,
There lives an old molecatcher, I can't tell you how.
He goes a-molecatching from morning till night
While the jolly young farmer goes playing with his wife.

Singing law-til-i-day, law-tili-little-i, law-til-i-day.

The molecatcher jealous of the very same thing,
So he hides in the bake-house and saw him come in,
And when that young farmer got over the stile
It caused the molecatcher to laugh and to smile.

He knocked at the door and thus he did say,
Pray, where is your husband, good woman, I say.
He's gone a-molecatching, you need not fear,
But little did she think the molecatcher was near.

She went upstairs - he followed the sign,
And the molecatcher followed them closely behind,
And when that young farmer was in the midst of his sport
The molecatcher grabbed him quite fast by his coat.

He clapped his hands and laughed at the sight,
Saying, This is the finest mole I've catched in me life.
I'll make you pay well for ploughing my ground
And the money it shall be no less than ten pound.

Very well, said the farmer, the money I don't mind,
For it only costs me about twopence a time.
So come all you young farmer chaps, mind what you're at
And never get caught in a molecatcher's trap.
Moles and Molehills
Moles, immortalised by Kenneth Graham in his book The Wind in the Willows, are small burrowing mammals and almost blind. They feed almost exclusively on earthworms and other small creatures found in the soil. They are considered a pest not least because of their habit of creating molehills of the waste material excavated during their burrowing activities, the fine soil of which encourages the germination of weeds and is unsightly in immaculately manicured lawns. It is also reckoned that soil from molehills contaminates silage making it unpalatable to cattle and other livestock.

However in the whole scheme of things moles provide the essential task, along with the worms they eat, of aerating and tilling the soil.
Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   © Copyright Mick Garratt and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
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NY5612, 17 images   (more nearby )
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Geograph (First for NY5612)
First in 5 Years (TPoint) ?
Date Taken
Saturday, 29 October, 2005   (more nearby)
Monday, 31 October, 2005
Fences   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NY 560 124 [100m precision]
WGS84: 54:30.2997N 2:40.8597W
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