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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 May 2008

The male pheasant often arrives before we have finished checking over the camera kits to get the first helping. On this occasion we thought he looked very drab but assumed it was just the light. But even in flash he looks dusty, and now Marie remembers she has seen him dust-bathing on the bonfire ash. He was back to vivid next day.

Ref: D3A_20080522_1743_004 fb2 Pheasant pair with male drab after dust bathing on bonfire ash.jpg

From a few days before, a head portrait of proud male pheasant lording it over a feeding female (out of focus on the left of the original).

Ref: D3A_20080520_1838_021 fb2 Pheasant male portrait (web crop).jpg

30 May 2008

The new bluetit nestbox on the venerable 'elm' post contains really young chicks - no calls audible & for a while one parent was passing food to the other inside.

Ref: DA1_20080520_1416_265 Bluetit flying to nestbox with food (wings open).jpg

Ref: DA1_20080521_1300_073 Bluetit flying from nestbox (web crop).jpg

29 May 2008

A buzzard did a few low circles about 20m high over our 'meadow'. All the photos have the green cast in the shadows which we assume is light coming off the grass.

Ref: DC1_20080520_1544_079 Buzzard flying low over grass (shadows tinged green).jpg

Some swifts did a few low circles. Here one has it's mouth open to catch the insects it feeds on.

Ref: DC1_20080520_1745_050 Swift in flight overhead with beak open.jpg

28 May 2008

The male kestrel is about this area a number of times each day at the moment.

Ref: DC1_20080518_1300_030 Kestrel in Flight.jpg

Rabbits are a constant presence that we don't often feature, but this one could take a nice portrait of itself because the rooks had moved away the log.

Ref: D3B_20080517_0704_067 fb1 Rabbit.jpg

27 May 2008

You see these by the thousand on flowering horse chestnut, but have you ever looked at the detailed mix of colours and forms?

Ref: P34_20080518_0901_757 Natural Horse Chestnut Bud 6 Seq zoom 2 (web crop).jpg

'Double trouble' or '2 for Joy'. NOT a montage.

Ref: D3B_20080518_0459_102 fb1 2 magpies.jpg

26 May 2008

At last got some decent images of House Martins. We have selected one that again illustrates birds flying with their heads 'still', in this case still horizontal, with the body, wings & tail all sideways (See Yellowhammer from 22 May 2008).

Ref: DC1_20080514_1528_077 House Martin in flight with head horizontal but body sideways.jpg

A pair of blackbirds appeared quite regularly together at this site, but never both good images together, so here is a montage (from successive frames) with the male moved for better effect.

Ref: D3A_20080514_1817_019 & 1809_018 fb2 Pair of Blackbirds (shifted montage).jpg

25 May 2008

We really don't know what is going on with this pair of Yellowhammers, but its an interesting moment.

Ref: D3B_20080511_1950_098 fb1 Yellowhammer pair displaying (Q).jpg

A gust of wind produced a cloud of pollen metres across from a stand of pines. The photo of this is not as impressive as the event, so here is a little induced but genuine mini-cloud.

Ref: DC1_20080513_1103_094 Pollen clouds from pines (web crop).jpg

24 May 2008

The male Kestrel did this lovely flyby, but then proceeded to hover against the sun.

Ref: DC1_20080512_1004_012 Kestrel male in Flight (web crop).jpg

Lovely pairing of colours. The female Brimstone is white but with the orange spot.

Ref: DC1_20080510_1743_023 Brimstone butterfly male on Red Campion.jpg

23 May 2008

The Blackbirds nest fledged successfully (while we weren't watching) but we found this fledgling still in the shed sitting on the junk.

Ref: P34_20080509_1827_191 Blackbird fledgling still in toolshed (web crop).jpg

We watched this squirrel dig up and eat about 6 bulbs from the grass patch we call the lawn.

Ref: DC1_20080511_1723_022 Squirrel eating bulb dug up from grass.jpg

22 May 2008

Starlings nesting in our roof-space now have young to feed. The chicks are being well supplied with an 'airlift' of all kinds of squishy nutritious yucks.

Ref: DC1_20080506_1113_004 Starling carrying food to nest entrance in roof 4 of 5 (web crop).jpg

Birds generally fly with their heads 'still', using the neck to adjust for orientation and oscillation of the wings - the kestrel is the best example. But this isn't bad - the head is clearly normally oriented while the body and wings are almost at a right-angle.

Ref: D3B_20080506_1927_019 fb1 Yellowhammer male in flight head upright and body & wings turned vertical.jpg

21 May 2008

The great tits have created a carpet of complete fallen blossom heads. They seem to be biting them off, eating the unformed fruit under the flower, and then dropping them. There is so much shade in the tree now the leaves are out its hard to get a clear image - this is the best illustration.

Ref: DC1_20080506_1116_019 Great Tit eating undeveloped fruit base of cherry blossom (web crop).jpg

The debris from the above - there are hundreds of these flower heads.

Ref: P34_20080506_1135_970 Great Tit dropped flowers after eating undeveloped fruit base of cherry blossom (web crop).jpg

20 May 2008

The swallows are back. This one seems rather elegant balancing in the wind. They have even been in the house through an open window and needed rescuing when caught in curtains.

Ref: DC1_20080506_1353_005 Swallow male on wire with curvy profile.jpg

Our dilapidated toolshed is apparently the ideal nursery for these blackbirds. Visits limited to one a day for a quick photo and to grab any tools we need.

Ref: P34_20080506_1401_972 Blackbird nest in Toolshed with Chicks.jpg

19 May 2008

The apple blossom this year has been prolific. Distant shots never seem to capture the feel, so here is a closer sample.

Ref: P34_20080506_1759_986 apple blossom.jpg

The Holly Blue butterfly is a rare visitor photographed here only 4 times: 1997 (Kodachrome - in flight, date unknown), 21 May 2001, 16 May 2002, 5 May 2008. Note the date drift.
The identification of the plant is wrong - it should be Green Alkanet (sometimes Evergreen Bugloss) (Pentaglottis Sempervirens). Thanks to Rory Morrisey for the correction.

Ref: DC1_20080505_1502_090 Holly Blue male (Q) Butterfly on Dyers Bugloss flower (Anchusa officinalis).jpg

18 May 2008

We have to assume the female is on the left begging the insect in the male's beak as part of courtship feeding.

Ref: D3B_20080504_1811_224 fb1 Robin begging insect from mate (web crop).jpg

17 May 2008

This pair of fieldmice (wood mice) seem to be having a energetic chase around the site.

Ref: D3B_20080430_2117_053 fb1 2 fieldmice (wood mice) chasing.jpg

At the other camera rooks moving the logs sometimes blocks the beam, blocks the camera, or as here generates an interesting new view.

Ref: D3A_20080502_2208_044 fb2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) clambering up side of log viewed from end of log.jpg

16 May 2008

Mr & Mrs Green woodpecker - we hope they are nesting somewhere! The male is the one with the extra red on the cheek.

Ref: DB1_20080430_1740_012 Green Woodpecker Pair with male top left (web crop).jpg

Some Snakes-head Fritilliaries are 'white', but this is the first time we have seen a 'clump' of them here. Unspectacular but rather pretty.

Ref: DC1_20080501_1014_014 Clump of Snakes-head Fritillaries white variant.jpg

15 May 2008

A lot of sound from a little bird. Human singers are taught to open their mouths wide to sing. The dunnock does it naturally.

Ref: DC1_20080501_1328_060 Dunnock singing in hedge.jpg

Don't usually get such a good view. He obviously saw us so perhaps he is getting used to us - 'mostly harmless'. This isn't as close as it looks (guess about 30m).

Ref: DC1_20080501_1809_079 Muntjac male resting in grass (web crop).jpg

14 May 2008

This week the Sparrowhawk has replaced the male Kestrel as flyby tease of the week. Have always loved the mad yellow eye.

Ref: DC1_20080501_1020_021 Sparrowhawk female in flight (web crop).jpg

Now the bird breeding season is upon us we will ensure that no more whole peanuts (that might choke a nestling) go out - the grits get sieved for the next few months! So here is a last 'fieldmouse (wood mouse) with peanut' for a while ...

Ref: D3B_20080430_0102_116 fb1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) carrying peanut.jpg

13 May 2008

Chaffinches everywhere we are delighted to say - this one singing his heart out from the hawthorn 'tree' growing out of the hedge over camera site 1.

Ref: DA1_20080428_1737_023 Chaffinch male singing in Hawthorn.jpg

While about to photograph the growing 'candle' on our selected horse-chestnut we noticed this Shieldbug. Now we have the authoritative and nicely presented tome on the subject 'The ... Shieldbugs and Squashbugs of the British Isles' by 'Evans and Edmondson' we are (reasonably) confident of the identification.

Ref: P34_20080427_0851_182 Green Shieldbug (Palomena prasina) Adult on Horse Chestnut leaf.jpg

12 May 2008

A first for us - a fly-over by a curlew in the evening sunshine.

Ref: DA1_20080428_1745_031 Curlew in Flight (web crop).jpg

We at first thought the beak contained something rather unfortunate, but it seems to be a piece of waste fruit.

Ref: DA1_20080428_1752_058 Jackdaw flying with piece of fruit in beak (web crop).jpg

11 May 2008

The unusually sharp image of a Robin flying through the site

Ref: D3B_20080425_2011_158 fb1 Robin in flight.jpg

Wrens are so quick its usually 'look - there was a wren there'. In a shady corner this one was exploring the ivy on the garage wall giving us a chance for a photo.

Ref: DA1_20080426_1258_029 Wren in ivy on bramble stem on garage wall.jpg

10 May 2008

The Muntjac deer like we usually see them - distant and nervously moving away from us. We rather like the horizontal bars of light and tree shadows.

Ref: DA1_20080426_1101_008 Muntjac Male (asymmetric Antlers) on S side of N hedge in bands of shadow.jpg

NOT a montage. We watched with amazement as the muntjac walked past the clearly visible fox without a qualm, being much more worried about us standing quietly about 100m away.

Ref: DA1_20080426_1757_080 Muntjac male and Fox ignoring each other in Field to E.jpg

09 May 2008

We have recently seen this rook with a load of wing feathers missing but it doesn't seem to effect his flight one iota.

Ref: DA1_20080424_1643_072 Rook in Flight showing damaged wing feathers.jpg

There were a couple of images like this at different places along the log, so we presume the stance has some significance. In the others its not so obvious that is isn't about to clamber up the log.

Ref: D3B_20080422_2221_089 fb1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) standing vertical by another.jpg

08 May 2008

The yellowhammer female at last poses properly. The male appears in the images for 1 May 2008.

Ref: D3B_20080421_1854_149 fb1 Yellowhammer female.jpg

Starling (nesting in our roof-space) collecting old reed mace for the nest.

Ref: DA1_20080418_1213_013 Starling gathering nesting material.jpg

07 May 2008

Black poplar's moment of glory is (for us) the red catkins. The dropped catkins make a slippery mess all up the track. The trees don't leaf for a few weeks yet. Oh - and there is a blue tit!

Ref: DA1_20080422_1316_050 Bluetit on open Black Poplar Catkins (web crop).jpg

And down on the ground the first daisies smile at the sun.

Ref: P34_20080422_1137_851 First daisies of 2008.jpg

06 May 2008

Don't often get Chaffinches in full flight, so have to forgive this one for leaving his tail out of frame!

Ref: D3B_20080419_0607_140 fb1 Chaffinch Male in flight.jpg

A more static image of the pair of chaffinches at this site.

Ref: D3A_20080421_1915_075 fb2 Chaffinch pair (Female moved).jpg

05 May 2008

When did your partner last offer you a nice slimy worm as a token of love?

Ref: D3A_20080418_1746_020 fb2 Robin with worm and mate.jpg

... or sing to you at 100dB

Ref: D3B_20080418_1946_054 fb1 Pair of robins with one singing.jpg

04 May 2008

Yesterday's newt eating heron finally got startled and took off. Fingers were not fast enough to catch the launch, but the wonderful wing shapes during lift-off do make a good sight. This image should animate showing about a second during the takeoff as 6 images.

Ref: D01_20080417_1602_532-537 Heron Takeoff from Duck Pond Anim.gif

03 May 2008

This mature heron spent about 45 minutes catching at least 15 newts (mostly the protected great-crested!) at the duck shaped pond. Here is a sequence of one such taken over about 1 minute. (1) Grab from water, (2 & 3) manoeuvre head first, (4 & 5) down it goes.

Ref: D01_20080417_1540_283-324 Heron catching and swallowing Newt (montage of 5).jpg

02 May 2008

This pair of mallard have been feeding together in various ponds for some days. After a couple of hours in the main pond they pulled out onto the bank near the house for a drowse in the sunshine.

Ref: DB1_20080415_1204_057 Mallard pair drowsing after feeding.jpg

Another inexplicable moment in the fieldmouse (wood mouse) family.

Ref: D3B_20080417_2108_253 fb1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice).jpg

01 May 2008

A pair of Yellowhammer are visiting this site as they did last year. The bright yellow head is the male - the less brilliant female has yet to take a good pic of herself

Ref: D3B_20080414_1841_020 fb1 Yellowhammer male.jpg

This might be a 'common' bee-fly (one of 12 or 15 species according to which book you look in but neither has any detail) but it is new to us.

Ref: DA1_20080415_1245_021 Common (q) Bee-fly (Bombylius major (q)) on orchard leaf litter.jpg



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