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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day
Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) in an unusual and appealing position - possibly surprised by something in the night and then even more surprised by the camera click and flash.
The two moorhen chicks seem to be doing fine, and the parents are starting another brood hidden from our view behind the main pond island.
Flag Iris is the dominant marginal plant at this pond in which moorhen are building their nest. Many stems now look very tatty as the Sawfly Larvae use them as green salad, but the plants thrive anyway.
This Red Kite made a momentary flyover.
It soon wandered off and a pair of carrion crows really took exception to its presence and harassed it until we lost sight of the group in the haze.
An unusually visible flyby of this orange-yellow eyed Sparrowhawk gave a chance for a few shots. The spacing etc of these is arbitrary - we have no positional reference in the bland sky. Since we took these we have glimpsed it twice in the next few days trying to grab birds near the house - the more normal whizz - what was that - gone.
The two juvenile Great Spotted Woodpecker seem to be doing fine, feeding themselves at the peanut feeders and also being fed by the parents. Here a juvenile is waiting on a vertical post complete with a chance insect.
It stops for a brief preen.
Next it tries out his beak and strengthening muscles by trying to demolish the post. It wasn't doing badly - the odd bit of wood went flying.
Red eyes - but NOT a red eyed damselfly - a Large Red Damselfly.
A better look at the intricate head and thorax
A pretty medium sized beetle called a Rustic Sailor Beetle.
Female scorpion fly, which doesn't have the curled up tail of the male. There are a pair of pics in flight in the Archive for 8 June 2009 about 2/3 down.
The male kestrel doesn't normally put on a good show when we are about, but was very intent on a hunt. He hovered for several minutes over the pasture.
He suddenly stoops, ripping through the air and disappearing straight into the long grass where we saw nothing & missed his takeoff!
He flew off to one of the black poplar trees nearby and you can see he is carrying a rodent in his talons. He spent several minutes concealed in the tree before flying off away from us - we don't know whether he ate the prey or took it off to a nest.
This adult and juvenile Great Spotted woodpecker still have a strand of saliva between their beaks after a feed - undoubtedly of peanuts from the feeder out of crop on the left. They quickly learn to feed themselves from the feeder.
A blurry mess of another GSW has been cropped off the left.
'If I kiss you will you turn into a mouse, or me into a slug?'
(Genuine single frame).
And a short tailed field vole checking over a slug a few days later.
(Genuine single frame).
We know Yellowhammers nest near our South East corner but its nice to get it confirmed by this adult female collecting caterpillars.
Yellowhammer male in all his glory.
This banded Demoiselle male sometimes returned to the same spot providing an opportunity for a photo alighting on a the Hop Sedge.
From a few days earlier, probably a different male from a different pond taking a flight through our 'flight tunnel' before being returned to where we caught him.
An Eyed hawk moth photographed in flight viewed from underneath with some attractive but unspectacular markings.
in flight from the top it's another story altogether! The eye spots do not show when the insect is at rest.
And how you might normally see him - the feathered antenna identify him as a male.
A first photograph we have taken here of Lime Hawk Moth, taken in flight after capture in a moth trap. We have included a bit of Large Leaf Lime twig, although the leaves here are atypically small to fit into our little photographic 'stage'.
A red-eyed damselfly without red eyes!
Many damselflies and dragonflies change colour hugely during their lives and this the form of the immature male - yet to develop red eyes and blue colouration on the last 2 tail segments. Thanks to Alan Nelson of the BDS for the ID.
9 days later we spotted this female Red-eyed damselfly this time with - wait for it - Red eyes - in a weedy patch 100m from any pond.
We caught both White and Buff Ermine moths in the moth trap on the same night which suggested a simple montage to allow comparison of size, colour and markings.
We often see Lacewings as an almost ghostly blue haze slowly flying in and out of hedges. So here is a good look at one of the larger one. One ID book says are 14 species in the UK, of which we can find photos or drawings of about 5 altogether. None of them include the wing spots this one has, so are not even going to guess at further identification.
This Brimstone butterfly is in surprisingly good condition for June. This image in flight shows the top of the wing (brightest yellow), bottom of wing (greeny-yellow) and body all in one 'lucky' image.
Azure damselflies are mating and laying in all the warm ponds. Here a pair 'in wheel' on an Flag iris frond - the dominant marginal plant in the main pond.
But mating is a dangerous time where the insects are more intent on what they are doing than
looking out for danger. Sad for the insect, but this sort of thing goes unseen all summer long.
This beautiful Broad-Bodied Chaser Dragonfly was using the withering
flag iris as a vantage point - it has no interest in pollen or nectar.
Shortly afterward an orange female flew by and he flew off after her.
The blue back (on the males only) is powdery and bright in Ultraviolet. If you are interested see Dragonflies in Ultraviolet from part way down & the top item on the page that follows. They are NOT dead - just cold, and like all the others flew off fine after warming in the sunshine.
Soon after we have replenished the photo site 'bait' the rooks and jackdaws come wheeling in to feed. In this case a strong wind (left to right here) gave some opportunities for flight studies. Here the top left image is moved a little up and left to fit but the remaining three are accurately placed at about 7 fps.
So far we know that one pair of adult moorhen are raising 2 chicks. Here the passing of some item of pond fauna has been passed to one of the chicks
Although each parent seems concentrate on just one chick each (actually chasing off the other) the chicks get on fine and are often seen lurking together. Here is a portrait of the little 'punks'.
A specially erected post in the meadow got a couple of all day on-off visits by the one-eyed little owl.
Accurate montage of two frames of him flying up from the ground after a successful catch make this rather surreal montage a bit reminiscent of a totem pole.
BBC Springwatch tells us all flycatchers are late this year. For us the number of Swifts has soared and the usual good show of Swallows plus the odd Martin has reduced to the odd flyover. So we make the most of the Swifts this year.
We are trying to catch the moment of an insect about to go into
a flycatchers beak. During this attempt we got this unusual
sequence of what we think is a swallow reaching way up
to catch an insect. Probably about 200mS between images
with arbitrary positions.
We guess that the insect was hidden by the right wing of the first image, and inside the beak by the second!
Even though this fox saw us it continued hunting some creature hidden from us in the long grass, doing a lovely pounce and only then bounding off away from us jinking as it went. as if to avoid attack. This montage is a fairly accurate portrayal of the events over about half a minute.
A Little Owl with a defective left eye has been using a post in the meadow as a hunting perch - on some days for hours spread through the day. Here he opened his beak wide and we expected, but didn't see, a pellet to be expelled, so maybe just a Y-A-W-N.
And here caught launching itself onto some unfortunate morsel (normally a worm or insect).
A first for us - a Goldcrest photographed by an automatic camera.
Although taken about 3 hours earlier, we didn't see automatic cameras image until the next day, meanwhile having spotted the little beauty hunting in the oak tree 10m from the tree trunk top. This is a 'wren size' bird and moves just as quickly!
Very gymnastic position balanced (or at least moving slowly) on the back feet over a gully.
Next frame was a badger, but an hour later so we guess this snail made it to safety even at their speed.
Another first for us. After some internal and external debate we conclude that this is a Lesser Whitethroat. This one would appear to have a nest nearby & it is collecting breakfast for some youngsters.
The Odonata (dragonflies and damselflies) suddenly appeared on Sat 22nd May so out came the insects in flight kit for some pics. This is an Azure Damselfly immature (weak coloured) male.
One sweep of the net over these frond produced both the damselfly and this spider. Our quickly acquired Spider field guide indicates the ID.
Great tits and Bluetits have been feeding youngsters every minute or so during the day. The food supply has been mostly small green caterpillars. The Great Tit nest box is the one on the dead elm featuring just right of centre in the majority of the animated sequence The field through 16 years.
Here the parents met at the hole. The bird outside has moved to it's right to let its partner fly out.
And an opportunity for this nice bird in flight - for once without a fecal sack as it leaves the box.
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