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Entry for twee fieldmouse (wood mouse) of the week.
Until this day Jays had been fleeting views and the odd photo. This dingy and wet afternoon was cheered by a dozen photos of Jays. Here is one of this beautiful bird from the Magpie family - more in a few days.
Another corn grain becomes a feast.
Montage of Great Spotted Woodpecker in bounding flight (flap like mad for a second or two, then fold wings and coast).
This Muntjac deer obviously knew there was a way through the fence, but couldn't find it because it was at the wrong end of 300m of fence. It spent 10 minutes before finally wandering in the right direction They can jump the fence in a panic, but prefer not to.
Even in worst weather our night-time cameras capture something interesting. Here a field vole carries off a piece of peel.
A tramp across the adjacent field startled this Short-eared owl in the grass perhaps 50m ahead. A new sighting for us here. Apparently they are often seen in daylight. It flew about for a minute or two before departing.
Its unusual to be able to photograph a flying sparrowhawk against anything but sky, so here is an different perspective against a poplar tree.
Surprise first sighting here of a Red Kite. The rooks took a dim view of this 'interloper' and soon chased it off.
Light just right to pick up the colours even if the face is turned away.
The ridiculous leaping fieldmice (wood mice) are back. There is no way this one could be jumping down from anything, so we think it must be mid-leap from the ground.
Two field mice come out after the rain.
The pheasants are back on a regular basis, at the moment the male mostly visits this site and the female only visits the other. Like the echoing of colours in the bird and the leaves.
On Thursday at 06:50 with it barely light we saw from the car a Kestrel hunting over the local road. It flew off as we slowed down & don't know which sex. But on Friday a bright start tempted us out with the camera (until the rising wind at near freezing drove us in) and this female kestrel obliged with a flyby obviously giving us a number of suspicious glances.
A little story helped along by a bit of brightening and sharpening of the magpie in the gloom away from the flashgun, but a genuine single frame.
The Autumn return of the pied wagtail, this first view on the roof ridge.
Whee ... We really can't work out where he came from and assumed he is mid-leap.
The carpet of snow barely lasted a day but this is the earliest we remember snow laying at all and news broadcasts seem to confirm this impression. A corner of the main pond is at the bottom left of the pic, which is a slightly wider view of the 18 year sequence you can find at http://www.moorhen.me.uk/the_field/the_field.htm.
Almost a week to the hour since the previous sighting we arrived at the corner of our patch to see an/the Osprey again with another huge fish, this time a little closer to us than before. One of our email group suggests that the fish is a carp. There were a couple of rooks about but not close enough to be in frame.
After a rain, out comes a fieldmouse (wood mouse) to frolic on the drying soil and leaves.
Almost a month after the last occurrence we saw a Pipistrelle bat in the day time - this time about 3 p.m. The bat has what looks like some sort of fly in it's mouth. Shortly after this it disappeared back into the loft through an 'impossibly' small slit.
In this following frame the bat has it's tail covering it's mouth probably adjusting the bite on the fly. It was 'banking' with wings vertical by then, but its so hard to interpret that we have turned the image to 'normal' to help you work it out.
Pairs of creatures tend to make more appealing images than singles, and this is a genuine single frame.
One of many black headed gulls we see fly over. What black head? In the winter they have just the slight black patch behind the eye.
We don't go on trips to see rare birds, and thought our only sight of an Osprey would be on the TV. This one, complete with classically streamlined fish in talon, flew by about 100m North of our patch. Apparently it had been around the Milton Keynes area for 3 weeks before we saw it on the 21 Oct 2008
Like the buzzards, the Osprey got the go-away treatment from the rooks.
The adult moorhen have largely regained the main pond for themselves, with the youngsters usually tolerated for a while and then chased off.
Harvesting, ploughing and harrowing the in nearby field has attracted the corvids flocks, and the kestrels get a few minutes peace to hunt.
A pair of collared doves canoodling on the top the mains cable post. We seem to have quite a few pairs now, with this pair usually to be found near this post. Who doesn't enjoy a scratch where you can't reach!
The spindle tree fruit and fruit case provides the only really strident natural colour clash we know of.
We found and photographed this beautiful butterfly Chrysalis without knowing the species. Next day we brought it into our insect rearing tank to observe it ...
... and here is the emerged insect - a Red Admiral butterfly. Released when the weather improved in the afternoon, we saw it around for several days feeding on our autumn flowers. Click to see a Red Admiral top view taken in 2006.
We haven't shown you bluetit for months, but they are now back in prime plumage and regular visitors.
The Fieldmice (Wood Mice) visit both sites every night. You realise these are what you may know of as Wood Mice?
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