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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

30 Apr 2008

Sure he was eating the buds/flowers but never caught him at it.

Ref: DA1_20080414_0909_040 Cherry (Q) Blossom with Chaffinch.jpg

The fieldmice (wood mice) are now making several visits most nights, so here is a sample.

Ref: D3B_20080412_2049_058 fb1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse).jpg

29 Apr 2008

Have finally identified a pretty lilac coloured 'weed' in various parts of the oldest land as Cuckoo Flower also called Lady's Smock (Cuckoo Flower).

Ref: p34_20080414_0938_338 Cuckoo Flower aka Ladys Smock (Cuckoo Flower).jpg

Rabbits look sweet and innocent at this age. Its later that they eat the flower, make warrens under sheds and tear the bark off trees!

Ref: D3B_20080413_0001_082 fb1 young rabbit.jpg

28 Apr 2008

The log at camera 2 keeps getting moved, once .5m away from the site. Here is a culprit. The log is not particularly heavy, but we are amazed that a rook can lift it in it's beak. We had assumed that it has been rolled or kicked out of position.

Ref: D3A_20080410_1836_017 fb2 Rook lifting end of log gripped in beak.jpg

Birds are just so agile in the air. There is the head of another Dunnock at the right edge of the original frame, so maybe this is the male showing off. You can see the log is in one of its 'rook-adjusted' positions

Ref: D3A_20080416_0633_091 fb2 Robin on ground watching dunnock twist towards him in the air.jpg

27 Apr 2008

An attempt to catch the feel of 'our' kestrel tumbling down out of the sky onto an unfortunate in the grass. Maybe should have spaced them out more vertically, but you get the idea.

Ref: DA1_20080412_1244_117+119+120 Kestrel male whiffling in dive (montage).jpg

26 Apr 2008

Before 'lunch' (his or ours?) the thermals haven't got going much yet so for once he is more than a spec in the sky.

Ref: da1_20080408_1112_014 buzzard.jpg

One of the male pheasants strutting his stuff in the sunshine.

Ref: DA1_20080409_1602_003 Pheasant Male striding along.jpg

25 Apr 2008

The Mallard duck pairs often take off together, but not so far close enough for a satisfactory 'pair of ducks in flight' pic. So here they are one at a time having panned from one to the other. First Him ...

Ref: DA1_20080409_1602_015 Mallard male in flight.jpg

... and now Her ...

Ref: DA1_20080409_1602_020 Mallard female in flight.jpg

24 Apr 2008

We watched as a buzzard flew lazy circles and then another came into view and they quietly circled for a couple of minutes before one closed in on the other and surprise 'dogfight' ensued. Here is the crux of the first encounter all taken within a second or two. They separated and drifted out of camera range continuing to spar.

Ref: DA1_20080409_1620_103+105+106+107+108 2 Buzzards in aerial fight (montage of 5 of 14).jpg

23 Apr 2008

There are 41 more of these and we haven't got the time at the moment to do more than label and store them against future effort. It was the classic hover, down-a-bit, hover, down-a-bit several times, pounce on the ground, eat it, and fly away. Never saw what was caught. Goes nicely as precursor to Kestrel Catching & eating Weasel as an illustration of his technique although he went straight down off the wires onto the weasel.

Ref: DA1_20080408_1118_059 Kestrel Male Hovering ever lower to drop on prey 13 of 42.jpg

Many trees have matured enough to start producing seed in the last couple of years, and the seed eaters are becoming regular visitors.

Ref: DA1_20080408_1604_037 Marsh Tit in Japanese Larch with seed in beak.jpg

22 Apr 2008

The snow here has not lasted long, but a quick rush out with the camera produced some rewarding results. The 'Duck & Daffodils' sounds like it ought to be the name of a country pub.

Ref: p34_20080406_0845_681 mallard drake with snow and daffodils.jpg

Whether they are squabbling or loving we are not really sure.

Ref: D3B_20080403_2254_116 fb1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) squabbling.jpg

21 Apr 2008

A little break from the fauna to appreciate the flora.

Ref: DA1_20080405_0753_006 Cherry Blossom.jpg

A study in glowing colours.

Ref: D3A_20080401_1909_061 fb2 Pheasant Male against Sunset.jpg

20 Apr 2008

A Muntjac deer pair came for a visit to the back garden/orchard on a gloomy day. This was taken in similar place & viewpoint to one of our long term favourites from 25 Apr 2005 - click on Muntjac mother & Fawn

Ref: DA1_20080403_1513_038 Muntjac female by back garden silver birch with daffodils & forget-me-nots.jpg

The head detail of the male Muntjac that was following the previous female. This is not the male deer we featured in January you can see by clicking on Muntjac male with asymmetric antlers Note the swollen scent gland and pit below the eye and the tiny tusk at the mouth which always makes us think of 'vampire muntjac'.

Ref: DA1_20080403_1514_047 Muntjac male head detail.jpg

19 Apr 2008

A Mallard duck (the female) leaping from the water in the evening sunlight. The background are some flower daffodils and silver birch trunks.

Ref: DA1_20080401_1746_082 Mallard female taking off from main pond.jpg

Pairs of moorhen seem to be nesting at two ponds and in a woodpile in the back garden. The two on the main pond are the only ones we can photograph easily, so here is a little portrait of them being affectionate.

Ref: DA1_20080330_0930_040 Pair of moorhen on main pond with female right.jpg

18 Apr 2008

A pair of Jackdaws have taken over an old Magpie nest in the Hawthorn trees about 5 metres from the house and are 'refurbishing' it - i.e. adding even more sticks. We rather like the stark gargoyle-esque silhouette.

Ref: DA1_20080330_1013_076 Jackdaw carrying twig to nest.jpg

Mrs. Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) doing an evening shop for potato? The white streak in the foreground is a bit of grass blown in the wind.

Ref: D3B_20080328_1934_108 fb1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) carrying potato peel.jpg

17 Apr 2008

From about 100m away we watched this male Kestrel hunting, catching a weasel in the grass, carrying it in its talons to a fence post, where it ripped it apart and ate it over about 5 minutes. In the 5th image (lower right edge) the prey is hidden by the body of the banking bird as it circled round to the fence post. All images are full resolution crops from huge originals. (Make sure you see the whole width).

Ref: DA1_20080330_1535_188-222 Kestrel male catching Weasel in grass & eating it on post (14 image Montage).jpg

16 Apr 2008

Think this is the same Kestrel male a few hours after his airborne skirmishes.

Ref: D60_20080327_1540_133 Kestrel male flying from evergreen tip.jpg

Another ridiculously tame robin 2m from us engaging in a song duel with two other robins each 20m or so away.

Ref: DA1_20080329_0914_046 Robin singing standing on Blackthorn thorn in hedge W of track.jpg

15 Apr 2008

A dogfight of several minutes between a male kestrel (a female kestrel staying with the two but at a 'safe' distance) took place too high for first class images, but this will give you an idea of the action. This is not a 'line-of-sight' effect - the adjacent frame taken a fraction of a second before has the rook's beak overlapping the kestrel - here the kestrel's wing overlaps the rook.

Ref: DA1_20080327_0950_213 Kestrel male and Rook in vertical mid-air fight (web crop).jpg

Unusual pose of a Long-tailed Tit with it's tail pushed out of position by the twigs and feathers fluffed out. Sweet little face.

Ref: DA1_20080321_1024_039 Long-tailed Tit in Hedge E of Arch.jpg

14 Apr 2008

We believe this is a female sparrowhawk - normally viewed here as a 'woooosh - what was that' experience as a small bird exits existence :-( On a not very fine day a surprisingly good thermal raised this circling bird from just about photographable distance to a speck in the blue in a couple of minutes with barely a wing flap.

Ref: DA1_20080326_1215_020 Sparrowhawk Female in Flight.jpg

Looks like we might be lucky enough to have long-tail Tits not only beautifying our patch, but breeding as well.

Ref: DA1_20080327_1010_441 Long-tailed Tit with beak full of nesting material.jpg

13 Apr 2008

Fox arrives just as the sky (top left) fades away.

Ref: D3A_20080323_1812_055 fb2 fox.jpg

At least two pairs of mallard visit the ponds and other areas. This pair moved out of the back-garden pond into the violets as we approached, thought about flying off (agitated bobbing etc.), but calmed down and we took this as we left the area, and they stayed for another hour or so.

Ref: DA1_20080326_1233_049 Mallard pair in Violets.jpg

12 Apr 2008

This year Redwings have moved from brief glimpse in autumn to regular views on the camera and physical sightings.

Ref: D3A_20080323_1019_157 fb2 Redwing portrait with patches of snow.jpg

A brave/crazy Robin getting stroppy with a Redwing many times its weight.

Ref: D3A_20080325_0544_125 fb2 Robin threatening Redwing.jpg

11 Apr 2008

Heron(s) are still hunting in 'Round' pond and this one spent 30m wandering around. We caught the moment that it left, springing upwards before disappearing out of frame, something we hope this little montage expresses.

Ref: D01_20080321_1331_018-021 Heron take-off from Round Pond Montage.jpg

10 Apr 2008

A striking example of size contrast. You just never see such size contrasts in books which are separated into separate sections. Despite the room for more brain in the pheasant, we think the Dunnocks make better use of what they have.

Ref: D3B_20080323_0801_170 fb1 Dunnock & Pheasant in Snow (web crop).jpg

09 Apr 2008

A pair of rooks have found both photo sites. Unfortunately they are strong enough to knock the logs about causing beam-break and focus problems. Here is the detail of the beak with its characteristic pale unfeathered skin at the base.

Ref: D3A_20080320_1313_072 fb2 Rook head detail.jpg

08 Apr 2008

The robins continue to display and generally show-off. Love the eye-to-eye contact.

Ref: D3A_20080318_0626_049 fb2 Pair of Robins.jpg

07 Apr 2008

This vole or voles had many forays to collect peanuts and take them we know not where. Here is a montage of three images over about 2Hrs chosen so as not to overlay one another.

Ref: D3B_20080314_1917_097+1803_087+2014_105 fb1 Field vole collecting peanuts montage.jpg

06 Apr 2008

Another entry for 'Miss Winsome Whiskers of 2008'?

Ref: D3B_20080315_0359_179 fb1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse).jpg

05 Apr 2008

For 17 years here we have hardly seen a House sparrow (though Tree Sparrows breed freely). Suddenly a Great tit (hole size) nest box on the dead elm stump is being investigated by a male House sparrow. He can only just squeeze in and out, and other potential occupants were lurking. Here a Tree sparrow has just made a hesitant flight by the House sparrow at the hole.

Ref: D01_20080314_1339_028 House Sparrow male at Great Tit nest box 4 of 7 with Tree Sparrow flying by.jpg

04 Apr 2008

A picture of a male blackbird to go with the female we presented on 19 Mar 2008 - Click Female collecting nesting material to see the 'girl'. These may not be a pair - the sites are about 100m apart.

Ref: D3A_20080313_0543_165 fb2 Blackbird male.jpg

03 Apr 2008

A robin manages to get itself all in-focus for this geometric display of wings and feathers.

Ref: D3B_20080309_1716_034 fb1 Robin head-on with wings and tail vertical.jpg

02 Apr 2008

The image you see is a heron that has just caught a pair of mating frogs. If that is gruesome enough for you stop here!
The bird couldn't swallow the linked pair, so repeatedly threw them back into the water to separate them, and then ate one. We didn't find any remains of the other and assume it survived. A day or so later we spotted spawn in the area - maybe success in their final act. An animated sequence of 15 images is at Heron Eating Frog Sequence.

Ref: D01_20080306_1358_129 Heron catches mating frogs (web crop).jpg

01 Apr 2008

Don't see often see male and female pheasants together. Its just getting dark at tea-time!

Ref: D3A_20080306_1703_077 fb2 Male and Female Pheasants eating together.jpg



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