Rodents are rodents? No, definitely not, I have promised to stand in the way of anybody trying to disturb the bush where my nearest little voles live. They live in dense thorny bushes where they make tunnels. These bushes are part of the original fynbos of the West Coast, and not something we planted here. Of course these clever animals think ahead and love multiple exits. Strangely enough the little Cape Robins seem to share these tunnels with them, as they are in and out, "visiting" or maybe "boarding" as there are no trees for birds on the coast. Something else I have noticed about these "buildings": like the ancients in Crete and Athens, the entrances of the abodes face East!
Voles are extremely shy and will not enter the house. I have the greatest problem taking photographs. They love sitting in front of their tunnels in the winter morning sun, but scatter if you as much as pass by a window inside. A vole is stouter in body than a mouse and also much larger. Voles have shorter tails and bigger ears. I am sure Beatrix Potter would have been enchanted to see them and would have made up little characters!
I needed depth for this painting and painted the background in watercolour over which I then glazed a layer of thinned down white acrylic. The vole and foreground was done in acrylics.