Return to moorhen home page

Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 Aug 2009

This is the first Burnet Moth of any sort we have spotted here. They are day-flying moths but don't fly very readily. So we have made a montage of our guest doing the best flight we got and then fluttering on a teasel head (where we had found it).

Ref: DA1_20090725_1256_169+1306_223 FT1 Six-spot Burnet Moth in Flight and perched on teasel (montage).jpg

30 Aug 2009

A male Brown Hawker Dragonfly male in Flight shown over a twig of hawthorn from the hedge it frequently flies over. This wonderful beast weighed in at only 0.9 g (about 1/30th Ounce).

Ref: DA1_20090725_1128_082+20090726_1243_004 FT1 Brown Hawker Dragonfly male in Flight with Hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

29 Aug 2009

A bumble bee netted feeding on Great Willow Herb near a bramble patch - most likely the cause of the slightly tatty wing edges.

Ref: DA1_20090725_1115_079+1313_267 FT1 Bumble Bee in Flight with Great Willow Herb flowers (montage).jpg

5 minutes later released on to a thistle flower it had a quick feed on that and then moved to a clump of Great Willow Herb & spent several minutes sampling the many flowers.

Ref: DB1_20090725_1120_211 Bumble Bee on Great Willow Herb Flower (web crop).jpg

28 Aug 2009

While many other species in moult look a bit like feather dusters, the chaffinches for some reason continue to look immaculate.

Ref: D50_20090717_2019_112_FB5 Chaffinch male by tree trunk on evergreen leaf litter.jpg

27 Aug 2009

Today two montages each of 2 images. First a melding of two events about 2 hours apart of what we think is the same young robin that makes a nice 'Robin taking off' sequence

Ref: D3A_20090722_0509_080+0653_104_FB2 Young Robin taking off (arbitrary montage 2Hrs apart).jpg

An absolute fantasie illustrating what is probably at least 2 robin families visiting site 2. The left bird has been flipped and merged to make this illustration of feather development.

Ref: D3A_20090718_2013_026+20090719_0520_042_FB2 2 Young robins with different feather development as face-to-face montage.jpg

26 Aug 2009

For whatever reason this is the first time for ages we have a photo of a mouse mid-leap. Even on the original its not clear whether the 'flying' mouse is the one with truncated tail we have spotted before or whether it is just curled behind out of view.

Ref: D3B_20090719_0103_048_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) leaping & another running away.jpg

25 Aug 2009

Yummy - this young fox has found some peanut butter on the end of the log and is licking it off.

Ref: D3A_20090721_2154_066_FB2 Young fox licking log.jpg

This guy shows the other aspect of a foxes culinary preferences - these teeth are for procuring the meat course.

Ref: D3B_20090719_2033_132_FB1 Fox (web crop).jpg

24 Aug 2009

This looks ridiculously like Mrs. Mouse inspecting the larder.
Actually the pristine ears suggest it is a young mouse.

Ref: D3B_20090721_0039_045_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) standing up in front of fruit & peanut grit.jpg

23 Aug 2009

After a years absence we are seeing the migrant painted lady butterfly this year. Most are rather tatty and faded but this individual was still in good condition. The Soldier Beetles on the thistle spent all 45 minutes of the photo-shoot mating in happy oblivion!

Ref: DA1_20090714_1037_075+1101_217 FT1 Painted Lady Butterfly in flight with small thistle & soldier beetles (montage).jpg

22 Aug 2009

This fox disappeared at what we know is a rabbit warren and then emerged in the long grass obviously eating something. After several minutes it's head raised enough to see the remains being chewed over. We were upwind of the fox and were surprised it tolerated us and the camera noise. We couldn't find any remains next day.

Ref: DB1_20090714_1805_183 Young fox finishing eating rabbit (q) by South Hedge of Field to East (web crop).jpg

21 Aug 2009

This is a Brown Hawker dragonfly female flapping her wings as she clambered up a hawthorn twig during a photo-shoot to photograph her in flight (but the flight images didn't capture the 3-D feel).

Ref: DA1_20090716_1101_128 FT1 Brown Hawker dragonfly female on Hawthorn twig (web crop).jpg

After the indoor shoot we took her out for release and took some more studies in sunlight until she flew off. This detail is looking from the top of the head (eyes at the bottom) down the face at the top.
We estimated the number of eye segments at 30,000, couldn't believe it, but then found a reference to an exact count for the 'American Common Green Darner' at 28,672 in an excellent UK book by Steve Brooks ISBN 0-953-13990-5 page 8.
The cells do not form images (unlike the ridiculous Hollywood and nature documentary illustrations) so that IS the resolution - about 10% of a 'VGA' (640x480) colour monitor but of course wonderfully sensitive to movement, colour vision including UV, and very robust. According to the book, 3 additional eyes in a triangle at the top are very sensitive to light and are directly used for orientation in flight.

Ref: DB1_20090716_1103_005 Brown Hawker dragonfly female head detail (web crop 2).jpg

20 Aug 2009

A montage of two images of the Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing moth. On the left in flight showing the startling orange underwing and on the right same species (probably the same insect) taken hanging from a hawthorn twig. The 'purpose' of the colour is said to be to startle predators. It certainly startled us because we hadn't identified the moth before the photo shoot and the first hint of the orange was in this 'first flight'.

Ref: DA1_20090716_1314_181+1322_214 FT1 Broad-bordered Yellow Underwing in flight & on Hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

19 Aug 2009

A pretty creamy gold moth called the Scalloped Oak shown in flight.

Ref: DA1_20090716_1422_403+1453_476 FT1 Scalloped Oak Moth in Flight with Hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

18 Aug 2009

A little special for the Woodland Trust phenology enthusiasts - a Comma Butterfly on a fruiting Rowan - both 'recorded' species.

Ref: DB1_20090715_1813_048 Comma butterfly on Rowan leaf near ripening Rowan berries (web crop).jpg

17 Aug 2009

Some long awaited rain brought out the slugs. The pale slug in the middle is a 'leopard' slug.

Ref: D50_20090717_2255_129_FB5 Leopard Slug + slugs + snail on tree trunk.jpg

And at another site on the same day 4 snails dominated the wet log.

Ref: D3A_20090717_0319_016_FB2 At least 13 slugs and snails during rain (web crop of mainly snails).jpg

16 Aug 2009

We know that moorhen eat snails in the pond, but don't think we have ever photographed or seen one with a land snail, in this case a couple of small ones. In the insert you can also see the directional serrations/barbs on the beak edge that probably help yanking about foliage & pond weed.

Ref: D50_20090717_1323_102_FB5 Moorhen eating snails.jpg

15 Aug 2009

A mouse has found the 'anvil stone' site. This was probably photographed by something else breaking the beam out of frame. Mice apparently staring at slugs and snails is uncannily common and this was the first and (and with another week gone by) only image of a mouse at this site.

Ref: D50_20090708_2314_039_FB5 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) (1st time any at this site) looking at slug.jpg

14 Aug 2009

Moorhen adult striding through site showing it's disproportionately large feed it needs for getting about on floating vegetation.

Ref: D50_20090711_0829_097_FB5 Moorhen adult striding through site.jpg

13 Aug 2009

The skipper butterflies are difficult to differentiate in photos, but we think this is a Large Skipper. But the most interesting item we only spotted when preparing the image - a caterpillar aligned along the edge of a partially eaten leaf.

Ref: DB1_20090703_1815_137 Large skipper butterfly with camouflaged caterpillar eating leaf to the right (crop).jpg

12 Aug 2009

This is our two young foxes taken 2 hours apart at sites about 15m apart. For the top image (8.20 p.m.) there was still some daylight.

Ref: D35_20090702_2022_017_FB4 Young fox (crop 3).jpg

The second at (10.15 p.m.) it is dark (and the site is under leaf canopy anyway) and the eyes are fully dilated so the eyes look black instead of brown.

Ref: D3A_20090702_2214_027_FB2 Young Fox with eyes fully dilated (crop).jpg

11 Aug 2009

All this excitement over a single Hazel nut? The nut is on the ground bottom right still in it's green covering.

Ref: D3A_20090704_1843_017_FB2 Squirrel leaping for Hazel nut.jpg

10 Aug 2009

Its a long way up for this fieldmouse (wood mouse) now we have filled in the trough under the log.

Ref: D3B_20090706_0233_124_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) climbing up end of log.jpg

09 Aug 2009

There are load of young birds about. Here a couple of young bluetits are looking for lunch (it was 12:30) near the displaced thrush anvil stone.

Ref: D50_20090702_1235_005_FB5 2 Young Bluetits foraging near thrush anvil.jpg

08 Aug 2009

The Comma butterfly used to be a Spring and Autumn only sighting here but this year we are seeing them regularly. The 'comma' is the white shape on the brown underwing.

Ref: DA1_20090705_1452_124+1518_197 FT1 Comma butterfly in flight with clover flowers (montage).jpg

07 Aug 2009

The gatekeeper butterfly has appeared. It is barely 2/3 the size of the meadow brown, but the two white dots in the black spot is characteristic

Ref: DA1_20090706_0858_034+20090705_1518_200 FT1 Gatekeeper butterfly in flight with Clover flower (montage).jpg

06 Aug 2009

From a nearby bridleway a Corvid-Buzzard skirmish disappeared out of site over the overgrown hedge. But the buzzard on its own then did a lovely flyover of which this montage probably represents between half and 1 second real time. Spacing is for effect rather than accuracy - actual positions unknown.

Ref: DB1_20090710_0851_038-_041 Buzzard in Flight 1 to 4 of 4 (montage).jpg

05 Aug 2009

Two images sent to us by our email-assortment recipient wedding photographer Sarah Vivienne ( who turned her camera on a commotion in her garden and captured a number of wonderful images of a male kestrel on what is probably a blackbird. Our selection, crop & processing of her originals.

Ref: Bird-1002 Kestrel male on prey (from Sarah Vivienne Photography) (web crop).jpg

Thank you Sarah!

Ref: Bird-1004 Kestrel male on prey (from Sarah Vivienne Photography) (web crop).jpg

04 Aug 2009

Young birds are everywhere. Here an adult male Chaffinch takes off over a youngster who looks like it is about to follow suit.

Ref: D50_20090630_1628_009_FB5 Young chaffinch on ground with adult male Chaffinch taking off over it (web crop).jpg

03 Aug 2009

The female Banded Demoiselle does not have the band on her wings that her mate does. The sheen on the abdomen is exquisite with a greener tinge than the males. In the recent warm days a 25m grass strip between hedges has become a wonderland of these beauties - about 4 males and a couple of females flutter gently around you as you walk slowly along the path.

Ref: DA1_20090629_1124_038+1136_082 FT1 Banded Demoiselle Female in Flight with Blackthorn leaves (montage).jpg

The edges of the 4 wings are so nearly aligned that they almost look like shadows.

Ref: DA1_20090629_1141_099 FT1 Banded Demoiselle Female on Blackthorn leaf (web crop).jpg

02 Aug 2009

Speckled wood butterflies have been on the wing now for a couple of months. This nice example landed in the only pool of sunlight near us. Before that a more tatty example in flight from several weeks ago.

Ref: DB1_20090630_1746_019 Speckled wood butterfly in pool of sunshine on leaf.jpg

01 Aug 2009

Thrush bashing a snail on the stone to get at breakfast. He ate at least two like this in 5 minutes.

Ref: D50_20090624_0727_044_FB5 Thrush with snail at anvil stone.jpg



Return to image of the day

Newer page of archive          Older page of archive