A HISTORY OF SURREY bold flight it is known to most dwellers in the country, and we have notes of its appear- ance in a large number of localities. An interesting account of a kestrel pursuing one of these bats at Norbury appears in the Zoologist, 1890, p. 107. Mr. H. W. Murray has kept this species in captivity for some time, but though it fed freely and drank water from the hand, it was as a rule quite savage, and bit in a very lively manner. It may most frequently be seen circling round the tops of high trees, from which habit is derived its oldest trivial name ' altivolans.' 6. Pipistrelle. Pipistrel/us pipistrellus, Schre- ber. Bell Scotophilus pipistrellus. This is of course the most abundant species in the county, where it is very gener- ally distributed. It is the least nocturnal of the British bats in its habits, being frequently noticed in the daytime. It is also sometimes seen in winter, and has even been observed in Surrey when snow was on the ground and the temperature below freezing point (Zoologist, 1887, p. 69). 7. Natterer's Bat. Myotis nattereri, Leisler. Bell Vespertilio nattereri. Mr. J. E. Harting, in his paper on the distribution of this species in this country (Zoologist, 1889), was unable to give any evi- dence of its occurrence in Surrey, but thought that very likely it had been overlooked. No local published record is discoverable, but Professor G. B. Buckton, F.R.S., informs us that he has captured two specimens of this bat at Greys Wood near Haslemere (in lit.). Beyond this account we have no other note of its appearance in the county, but a careful investigation would probably lead to its being found in other localities. 8. Daubenton's Bat. Myotis daubentonii, Leis- ler. Bell Vespertilio daubentonii. Although seldom specifically recorded from the county, this species is, in our opinion, not uncommon. Several local naturalists recog- nize four species of bats which are identified as the long-eared bat, the noctule, the pipis- trelle, and a fourth which is probably Dau- benton's. A large number (of which eight were taken) were found in July, 1888, in a hollow apple tree at Cranleigh. The species was identified by the Rev. J. E. Kelsall, and the occurrence recorded by him in the Zoologist, 1889, p. 308, and by Mr. W. JefFery, ibid. p. 450. This bat is usually seen in the neighbour- hood of water, and we are quite confident that it occurs in some numbers on the Mole near Leatherhead. 9. Whiskered Bat. Myotis mystacinus, Leisler. Bell Vespertilio mystactntu. We have been unable to discover any pub- lished record of the occurrence of this bat in Surrey. Mr. Robert F. Tomes informs us that he has taken specimens in the under- ground workings in the greensand near God- stone, and that it is there not uncommon (in lit.}. As it has occurred in all the neighbouring counties, it is probable that a careful search would discover it in other parts of Surrey ; it is sometimes, doubtless, mistaken for its common congener, the pipistrelle. INSECTIVORA 10. Hedgehog. Erinaceus europ&us, Linn. Common in all the rural districts, but has receded before the advance of the suburban building. Mr. Reeves had a white specimen which was killed near Reigate in 1894 (in lit.). 11. Mole. Talpa europesa, Linn. Abundant nearly everywhere. Much sub- ject to variations in colour, white, buff, orange, grey, and even pinkish specimens being occa- sionally met with. Mr. Reeves of Reigate has a collection of twenty-seven colour freaks, some of which are most striking. 12. Common Shrew. Sorex araneus, Linn. A generally distributed and common resi- dent. It is popularly recognized, owing to its being at certain seasons of the year frequently observed dead in the country roads. 13. Pigmy Shrew. Sorex minutus, Pallas. Bell Sorex pygmeeus. According to Bell this little animal is found all over England, but is rarely met with on account of its nocturnal habits, being very rarely seen in the daytime. It is the smallest mammal known in Europe, being only 2^ inches in length, including its tail which is I inch long. We have taken its remains (skull, etc.) from the castings of white owls at Epsom. 14. Water Shrew. Neomys fodiens, Pallas. Bell Crossopus fodiens. So few persons are aware of the existence of this species that it has been found rather difficult to gauge its distribution in Surrey very accurately. Doubtless a careful watch 220
Page:VCH Surrey 1.djvu/262
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