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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 Dec 2009

The Pheasants are back in numbers - probably now 'stuck' here by the lack of cover on the sheep cropped grass all round us. The pheasant don't from choice cross ground with nowhere to hide.

Ref: D3A_20091204_0839_062_FB2 Pheasant male at dawn.jpg

30 Dec 2009

One of the female pheasants fastidiously picking up a berry cluster.

Ref: D3B_20091121_0857_017_FB1 Pheasant female eating berry (crop).jpg

29 Dec 2009

Female chaffinch coming in to land on the well laden trunk top off to the lower right.

Ref: D35_20091126_1517_010_FB4 Chaffinch female coming in to land.jpg

28 Dec 2009

In just a few years Marsh tits have moved from seeing occasional individual to regulars - and in this case 2 at once in the same frame.

Ref: D36_20091124_1555_063_FB3 Marsh Tit on perch and another flying under (crop of single frame).jpg

One visited the tree stump some 70m away for a decent portrait.

Ref: D35_20091128_1320_047_FB4 Marsh Tit.jpg

27 Dec 2009

A cheeky looking rook with all that interesting white face detail.

Ref: D3A_20091126_1541_027_FB2 Rook (head crop).jpg

26 Dec 2009

A quick look and sniff to see if clambering up is worth the trouble. Drat - the cat has licked up the peanut butter!

Ref: D3B_20091124_1758_123_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) sniffing top of stone.jpg

25 Dec 2009

This is a simplified version of our 2009 Christmas card.
Best wishes to you all.
We haven't seen a lot of the Muntjac deer through the year, but early on midsummer day this beautiful fawn took it's portrait.
Back: (View 'Landscape')
We have been enjoying owls again this year - not in the same variety as last year, but this magical Barn Owl flew over the pasture to our North in February.
Building works at a neighbouring farm displaced the Little Owls (proper common name) that lived in a now demolished barn. We now have at least 2 of them increasingly visiting around our house. This one took it's picture mid October outside the kitchen window, and we now see them lurking in the orchard at dusk and dawn, and hear them duetting over the CCTV audio!

Ref: Xmas Card 2009 (web version).jpg

24 Dec 2009

A portrait of a great tit hanging from the top of the tree stump with unusually clear view of the claws.

Ref: D35_20091115_1523_009_FB4 Great Tit.jpg

23 Dec 2009

The more disreputable the fruit, the more the mice seem to like it.

Ref: D3B_20091115_2210_030_FB1 Mouse on rotten fruit.jpg

22 Dec 2009

This is a short audio recording of a pair of Little Owls calling in the orchard (in mono unfortunately but you can hear the difference). Click to hear: MT2_20091113_1637_038_CCT 2 Little owls calling (crop).mp3.
We typically see the little owls like this - peering through the branches of nearer trees. The 'red eye' is the standard problem with flash close the camera reflecting off the bird's retina & we decided to leave in it's dramatic effect. A more conventional Little owl image can be found at 11 Dec 2009 and another in-flight 20 Nov 2009.

Ref: DA1_20091115_1635_004 Little owl through orchard branches (web crop).jpg

21 Dec 2009

The perch by the kitchen window peanut feeder is the site of many disputes, including one between this pair of greenfinches.

Ref: D36_20091118_1305_122_FB3 2 Greenfinches on perch.jpg

20 Dec 2009

Not since the strange CCTV captured event with the cat (see 10 Nov 2009) have we 'seen' a polecat. It obliged with just this one frame in the middle of the plot.

Ref: D3A_20091118_0332_022_FB2 Polecat (web crop).jpg

19 Dec 2009

This female kestrel was hunting from the wires in a strong wind.

Ref: DB1_20091117_0923_028 Kestrel on high voltage wires (web crop with upper cable removed).jpg

18 Dec 2009

At the right of the site one bird is just disappearing and wouldn't you be with such an energetic pursuer. The curved wings are genuine flight stress bending and not some camera artifact.

Ref: D3B_20091120_0743_066_FB1 Dunnock chasing off another bird with only tail in frame.jpg

17 Dec 2009

The robins are all in splendid colour.

Ref: D3A_20091107_1546_012_FB2 Robin.jpg

16 Dec 2009

This kestrel had taken a meal to a distant phone pole and just wouldn't be removed by either a jackdaw or these 2 magpies which followed up the harassment.

Ref: DB1_20091108_1508_114 Magpies harassing kestrel on pole top 2 of 2.jpg

15 Dec 2009

The wonderful defense of thistles doesn't seem to be very effective on this sheep at least, who spent several minutes carefully selecting thistles rather than the (poor) grass also available.

Ref: DB1_20091107_1240_127 Sheep eating thistle (web crop).jpg

You would think that this sheep would be really annoyed by a magpie climbing all over her face, covering an eye and pecking at the wool, but they seem very tolerant. In this photo the magpie wasn't landing but had walked down the face and was climbing back up.

Ref: DB1_20091108_1501_016 Magpie climbing up sheep face (crop 2).jpg

But eventually she did shake off the bird. Maybe it had managed to scratch an itch at one of the sheep's acnestis.
acnestis (pronounced AK-nist-uhs) means 'The part of the body where one cannot reach to scratch' - a word we picked up a few days ago from the daily mailing a few days ago and couldn't resist using - we had no idea a word for this existed!

Ref: DB1_20091108_1503_030 Magpie climbing pecking sheep face.jpg

14 Dec 2009

Lets have a rave for the house sparrow in sad decline.
This is the first time we have recorded one at this feeding station outside the kitchen.

Ref: D36_20091109_1337_012_FB3 House Sparrow (1st time at this perch).jpg

Unusual view of a Greenfinch showing more green than you usually see. Looks almost luminous - we haven't 'wound up' the colour.

Ref: D36_20091109_1541_056_FB3 Greenfinch back view with wings spread.jpg

13 Dec 2009

A glorious male chaffinch showing us all his colours except for the blue beak he has only in the breeding season.

Ref: D3A_20091109_1601_017_FB2 Chaffinch male in flight (web crop).jpg

12 Dec 2009

The Leopard slug seems to have found a whole windfall apple to rasp at with his radula.

Ref: D3A_20091113_1913_023_FB2 Leopard slug on apple.jpg

11 Dec 2009

Having finally identified a night-time bird call as little owls we are now clued in to finding them. At the moment we have at least two visiting and they have been momentarily spotted together about 25cm apart on a tree branch. But more often they are calling to each other in a wonderful ping-pong stereo effect. Here is one of them at the top of a telephone pole.

Ref: DA1_20091113_1635_005 Little owl on Telephone pole top (web crop).jpg

10 Dec 2009

We think starlings look wonderful. The bird on the right was calling.

Ref: DB1_20091115_0823_127 2 Starlings on high voltage cables.jpg

09 Dec 2009

The kestrel and a jackdaw had a little spar up in the distance but the kestrel finally got the upper hand and drove the jackdaw down to the ground (always, of course, out of sight!). The is an accurate montage at about 7 fps.

Ref: DB1_20091102_1258_500-505 Kestrel chasing jackdaw down behind hedge 1-6 of 6 (montage).jpg

08 Dec 2009

This kestrel caught a mouse in the grass, flew to a fence post with it in one claw and proceeded to devour it.
(The montage is mirrored to provide left to right flow so the prey is in the right foot should it matter to anyone.)

Ref: DB1_20091102_1244_249+267+1245_284 Kestrel carrying and eating mouse 02+07+15 of 16 (montage).jpg

07 Dec 2009

Watching a Kestrel bird dropping in height in steps before diving onto prey never ceases to thrill us. This is an accurate montage at about 7 fps (so this sequence lasts a bit less than a second).

Ref: DB1_20091105_1245_047-051 Kestrel diving onto hidden prey in grass 1-5 of 6 (montage).jpg

06 Dec 2009

The kestrels really are resisting corvid harassment very determinedly this year. This rook spent several minutes flying over this kestrel from one side of the wires to the other, waiting a few second and doing it again (we think about 5 times). This accurately positioned but arbitrary selection of images was from a right to left flyover (into the wind where it could hover). The kestrel only moved it's head to watch so we started assembly of this montage using the kestrel belonging to the top rook.

Ref: DB1_20091105_1326_180-1327_217 Kestrel on wires harassed by Rook 1-38 of 39 (ad-hoc accurate montage).jpg

05 Dec 2009

Watching a Kestrel bird dropping in height in steps before diving onto prey never ceases to thrill us. The top bird is accurately positioned where it made it's final hover. The 5 lower images are an accurate montage at about 7 fps (so this part of the sequence lasts a bit less than a second).

Ref: DB1_20091105_1336_464-469 Kestrel diving on to prey 1-6 of 7 (accurate montage about 7 fps 2-6).jpg

04 Dec 2009

The Pied Wagtails visit from November through February and the most likely place to find them is on a sun warmed area of roof slates - they work round the house as the sun moves round looking for insects drawn into action by the warmth. From 2 years ago we include a montage of bird chasing after an insect. This year we so far have a victorious capture on the roof ridge.

Ref: DB1_20091107_1102_038 Pied wagtail on roof ridge with insect.jpg

03 Dec 2009

The Grey squirrels are feeding like mad to fatten up for the winter cold and leaner pickings. Contrary to what many people believe they do not hibernate but only come out of their drays for short periods to feed.

Ref: D50_20091025_1212_110_FB5 Grey Squirrel (web crop 2).jpg

02 Dec 2009

A bit of fun with probably the same fieldmouse (wood mouse) over some 5 hours on 1 night. So far we think we are seeing just this one young mouse at this new site.

Ref: D3B_20091024_2338_036+042+2009_1025_0455_060_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) over 1 night (fantasie montage).jpg

01 Dec 2009

Jays are just so beautiful! They are about the same size as magpies (and belong to the same family of corvids). No doubt this one will be burying loads of acorns for winter feeding, many of which will sprout next year.

Ref: D50_20091028_1053_006_FB5 Jay.jpg

After preparing this we enjoyed a BBC Autumnwatch TV program also eulogising about Jays and Magpies.

Ref: D50_20091028_1135_007_FB5 Jay.jpg



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