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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

30 Nov 2010

Continuing from the previous dive down, we lost her in the grass but picked her up flying nearly straight at the camera with some small morsel in her left claw (right as viewed). We have had to spread the images left to right as they hopelessly overlapped if montaged in their proper places. The hunt, dive and this takeoff all taken within the same exciting minute!

Ref: DF1_20101004_1620_088-091 Female kestrel takeoff from grass with small prey item in left claw 1-4 of 5 (arbitrary montage).jpg

Several days before & 200m away to the North she caught a rodent on the bridleway (unable to ID) and flew up to a post with it, had a few pecks and flew off with it down the bridleway.

Ref: DF1_20100930_1229_328-330 Kestrel female on post with rodent flies along bridleway 15-17 of 41 (accurate montage @7 fps).jpg

29 Nov 2010

About 30m away on our own mains cables and with us in full view the bird ignored us and got on with an avid search of the ground. She is in one place all of the time - so we have placed each pic as if along the wire.

Ref: DF1_20101004_1620_064+069+071+073 Female kestrel hunting on house mains cables & diving down 01+02+03+05 of 12 (montage).jpg

Frames 6 & 7 were wings up 'ready to go', and then woosh - down she went. We have had to spread the pics horizontally except for the last pair. (Tomorrow - what happened next).

Ref: DF1_20101004_1620_076-080 Female kestrel hunting on house mains cables & diving down 8-12 of 12 (Horiz stretched montage).jpg

28 Nov 2010

A newly arrived Jay took us by surprise by hunting from the bridleway posts presumably for worms and insects all swallowed on the ground. Here a montage of it flying from the ground up to a post top. It was beautiful to watch this over and over as the bird worked its way along the posts.

Ref: DF1_20100930_1459_446-453 Jay flying up to land on Bridleway fence post 1-8 of 8 (accurate montage + spaced frames).jpg

These 2 images show the jay flying down, skimming along the ground and then swerving to dive down on something in the grass. We have never seen this before and neither have experts we have consulted.

Ref: DF1_20100930_1500_478-487 Jay flying to post on bridleway dives down and turns into grass 07-16 of 23 (accurate montage).jpg

Ref: DF1_20100930_1500_488-494 Jay flying to post on bridleway dives down & turns into grass 17-23 of 23 (accurate montage exc left bird & wing).jpg

27 Nov 2010

The windfall apples are a great hit with the voles, mice and slugs. (Genuine single frame a bit tidied up)

Ref: D45_20101001_2140_043_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) and Bank Vole (adjusted crop).jpg

Ref: D45_20101001_2324_092_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) standing on red apple.jpg

26 Nov 2010

A flock of about 100 goldfinches disperses to feed. Here a group of 10 in one image is better presented as this 7 all stuffing themselves on Silver Birch catkins. This is a mixture of males, females and juveniles.

Ref: DF1_20101002_0909_036 7 of 10 Goldfinches feeding on silver birch catkins (crop).jpg

And one in more details - "caught in the act". Is the look 'guilty' or 'so what'.

Ref: DF1_20101004_1113_023+024 Goldfinch adult feeding on silver birch catkins (montage).jpg

25 Nov 2010

Out on the bridleway with coats on, this Small Copper butterfly was sunning itself on the ground. This is the normal form, rather than the blue-spotted variant we photographed in the same month last year

Ref: DF1_20101002_1040_177 Small copper butterfly on bridleway near Pineham Farm (crop).jpg

We have a yellow Buddleia that has always kept flowering until the first air frost. We seem to have a solitary Red admiral around the plot that is a regular on these flowers. Here it is rolling up it's proboscis after feeding on nectar - there is still a drop of fluid at the top of the curve.

Ref: DF1_20101002_1247_464 Red admiral butterfly coiling up proboscis 2 of 2 (crop).jpg

24 Nov 2010

A portrait of our new local female Kestrel flying along in the distance.

Ref: DF1_20101004_1612_045 Female kestrel in flight 1 of 4 (crop @ 768).jpg

This is the next 3 images accurately montaged - we are frequently surprised how far a bird in full flight goes 'per flap' once it is in full flight.

Ref: DF1_20101004_1612_046-048 Female kestrel in flight 2-4 of 4 (accurate montage @ 7 fps)).jpg

23 Nov 2010

A few collared doves have reappeared after a short summer absence. This one perching on the main electric wires took off nicely on cue for the camera. Montage at about 7 fps is horizontally stretched to show the whole bird each time.

Ref: DF1_20100921_1802_052-055 Collared Dove taking of from wires (horizontally stretched montage).jpg

22 Nov 2010

"Mr. DeMille - do you prefer my front or profile views?"
Consecutive frames of a ludicrously twee mouse.

Ref: D45_20100925_0355_131+0356_132_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) on hind legs with front paws together (montage).jpg

21 Nov 2010

This field mouse (we think the same one each time but not sure) came visiting this rotten apple for hours. Here is a confection of 3 visits.

Ref: D45_20100928_1931_183+1915_177+20100929_0007_205_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) or mice inspecting rotten apple (montage over 5 hours).jpg

The robin spent 15 minutes in the morning with better culinary equipment making the hole ever bigger, and appeared again the same evening for further helpings.

Ref: D45_20100930_0753_314_FB1 Robin pecking at rotten apple (crop).jpg

20 Nov 2010

Some dew drenched mornings have created very visible spiders webs & some water drops large enough to work as lenses. Here the second from the left berry and drop is inverted and enlarged 5 times on the top right showing an image of our treetop line.

Ref: DF1_20100930_0943_007 Water droplets on Asparagus twig & berries forming images (crop with inverted insert).jpg

The camera DOES lie - you can see these rainbows on dew spangled spider webs by eye much better than they are captured by cameras because the intense colours tend to overexpose and turn white. While trying to catch the wanted effect on this occasion the camera auto-focussed on the foliage behind, so the water refracted colours show up much better.

Ref: DF1_20100930_0958_130 spider web in hawthorn hedge with water drops showing rainbow (crop from defocussed).jpg

19 Nov 2010

Many birds feed on the emerging catkins of the silver birches, and among them we spotted this lovely male Bullfinch stuffing itself.

Ref: DF1_20100930_1027_196 Bullfinch male eating silver birch Catkin (crop).jpg

18 Nov 2010

A couple of (possibly the same individual) fieldmouse (wood mouse) portraits about an hour apart.

Ref: D3A_20100921_0329_076+0446_080_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) (montage).jpg

17 Nov 2010

The change-over between day-shift and night-shift is always interesting.
Birds start singing a few minutes before the bats head for the loft.
Owls and Corvids squabble for only a few minutes at twilight, etc.
But we rarely get images of birds and mice in the same frame so 2 consecutive frames a couple of minutes apart, both showing a robin seeing off a mouse, suggest that birds are above mice in the 'pecking order', especially if the bird is a robin.

Ref: D45_20100922_1929_057+1927_056_FB1 Mouse running from robin (montage of 2 events 2 minutes apart).jpg

16 Nov 2010

Some of the bounty of Autumn moved to the photo sites lets us see them stuffing themselves in preparation for the hard times ahead, even if they don't know why.

Ref: D45_20100923_1921_040_FB1 Vole eating blackberry fruit (crop).jpg

Sticky fingers (well paws anyway)!

Ref: D45_20100924_1940_108_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) eating blackberry fruits (crop @ 768).jpg

15 Nov 2010

A movement catching the eye and a quick grab for the camera while the Weasel moved to the other side of the conservatory was just in time to catch this image through the rain splashed window. It didn't seem to notice us - maybe dirty windows are a GOOD wildlife watching tip!

Ref: DF1_20100925_1404_060 Weasel (crop).jpg

14 Nov 2010

A common Blue butterfly male feeding on some ragwort flowers. Its a bit faded on both sides - signs of a life well spent in the sunshine? If he has a memory for such things (pretty unlikely!) he is going to be disappointed to find it gone later in the day after a grass cut (its was growing in a grass walk). We don't let poisonous Ragwort seed in this cattle country anyway. The yellow buddleia (which flowers until first frost) will have to do.

Ref: DF1_20100921_1302_041 Common blue butterfly male feeding on Ragwort (crop).jpg

Craneflies all over the place, but perhaps not the invasion of some years. Here a pair doing what comes naturally down in the grass.

Ref: DF1_20100921_1305_064 Craneflies mating on grass (crop).jpg

13 Nov 2010

A small and pristine badger at about 3:30 a.m. looking for 'tea' by his time clock.

Ref: D3A_20100914_0327_058_FB2 Small badger.jpg

12 Nov 2010

A fairly typical encounter at the camera sites, this time between a robin and a great tit. Note the capricious floating seed in front of the robin's beak.

Ref: D3A_20100915_1815_142_FB2 Great Tit landing on log with aggressive robin with floating seed near beak (crop).jpg

11 Nov 2010

This windfall apple from a red apple tree brought to the site created a lot of interest amongst the customers. Here from a vole.

Ref: D45_20100914_0254_093_FB1 Vole nibbling apple.jpg

Twee fieldmouse (wood mouse) - with apple.

Ref: D45_20100917_1927_050_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) on hind legs by apple.jpg

Finally got carried off after about 4 days. We suspect it was bitten up by a fox or badger we didn't see, but it's a sharp variety and it didn't eat it all.

Ref: D45_20100918_0508_102_FB1 Rabbit carrying off last piece of whole apple.jpg

10 Nov 2010

A couple of mice spent quite a while feeding quietly on the top of the tree stump, but never aligned themselves nicely together - so we have 'cheated' with an accurate montage.
The harvestman spiders far exceed the number seen in previous years.

Ref: D35_20100912_0102_138+0113_140_FB4 2 fieldmice (wood mice) & 2 harvestman spiders feeding on tree stump (montage for 2 good views).jpg

Genuine single frame. We wonder where the mice are hiding the trampoline.

Ref: D45_20100912_2214_265_FB1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) leaping at once (crop).jpg

09 Nov 2010

A really pretty little moth we think is a 'Square-spot Rustic'.

Ref: DA1_20100912_0936_108+0940_117_FT1 Square-spot Rustic (Xestia xanthographa) (q) moth in flight with Hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

We are fairly sure this moth is a 'Sallow'. We didn't get any one shot we thought told the whole story so here are two views on either side of a twig.

Ref: DA1_20100912_0943_127+133+0940_121_FT1 The Sallow Moth in flight - 2 views either side of hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

08 Nov 2010

As the season advances dragonflies generally get tatty wings from encounters with thorns etc. They continue to fly fine with quite extensive damage - we are glad there are no nerves in dragonfly wings. This Common Darter Dragonfly female is now past breeding and is photographed with the actual teasel plant she was netted on. Her head is turned bit toward the camera with her left eye at the top of the head.

Ref: DA1_20100912_1435_068+1444_081_FT1 Common Darter overmature female (torn wing) in flight with teasel netted on (montage).jpg

This image of a male of the same species is taken as a single exposure using a strobe light - a very fast flash with the shutter held open. 80Hz means 80 flashes a second, so the image below last for about 1/10th second. These have to be photographed against an extremely black background (typically 20 flashes hit it) and are not photo montages but made 'in the camera' with the images appearing to be transparent.

Ref: DA1_20100917_1234_018_FT1 Common darter dragonfly male in flight strobe @ 80Hz (crop).jpg

We accidentally caught this fly along with a dragonfly (likely the male above) and we used the same strobe technique for this pic.

Ref: DA1_20100917_1307_046_FT1 Flesh-fly in flight strobe @ 80Hz (crop).jpg

07 Nov 2010

A wet morning produced some wonderfully bespangled webs. The spider you can see in the middle of the web has the common name 'Garden Spider'.
Apparently the glue on the web stays sticky even when wet, but we can't think the covering of dew drops does anything for the 'stealth' aspect of the web!

Ref: DF1_20100912_0751_012 Garden Spider on dew drenched backlit web (crop).jpg

Same web, same spider, from the sun-lit side.

Ref: DF1_20100912_0754_025 Garden Spider bottom view on dew drenched web (crop).jpg

06 Nov 2010

A morning session photographing bats flying round before entering their roost in our loft is portrayed as this montage over about 5 minutes. Positions are adjusted to avoid overlaps. The house wall is accurately positioned for the bat closest to it (i.e. from the same frame).

Ref: DB1_20100915_0554_098+0556_137+138+0559_194+0600_245 Brown Long-eared bat in flight (5 image montage).jpg

The upright posture of the bat at the top looks like something out of a Dracula story.
People frightened of bats getting tangled in hair etc. should know that we have spent hours with them flying around our heads and Marie has long fine hair, and although we sometimes feel the breeze of them passing none has ever touched us or our equipment. They seem to 'see in the dark' (echolocate) better than see in the day.

Ref: DB1_20100915_0559_194 Brown Long-eared bat in flight (crop).jpg

05 Nov 2010

The mint bed outside the back door has been allowed to flower and some of the butterflies like to feed on it now many other flowers are turning to seed. First the crenelated Comma butterfly, named for the white spot when the wings are closed.

Ref: DA1_20100916_1505_050+1556_153_FT1 Comma butterfly in flight with mint flower-head (montage).jpg

And now a Red Admiral butterfly.

Ref: DA1_20100916_1618_178+1556_148_FT1 Red Admiral butterfly in flight with mint flower-heads (montage).jpg

04 Nov 2010

Hardly a nick in the wing of this beauty despite being almost at the end of his life.

Ref: DA1_20100917_1339_077+20100912_1444_080_FT1 Southern Hawker Dragonfly male in flight with teasel head (montage).jpg

03 Nov 2010

Photographed through the living room window, a bluetit feasted on seeds from a broken weed stem in the hedge. Look carefully at the beak and you will see the seed itself attached to the hairs that would have let it be blown away in the wind if the bird hadn't got it first

Ref: DF1_20100917_1105_036 Bluetit plucking and eating seed-heads from Hawkweed (q) (crop).jpg

02 Nov 2010

After dark a fieldmouse (wood mouse) makes whole meal out of the pulled out stalk and core of a strawberry.

Ref: D35_20100903_2143_034_FB4 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) eating strawberry top.jpg

Carrot tends to get nibbled for a day or so before suddenly disappearing. On the side of the tree stump is a harvestman spider that looks like it has FAR too many legs because the legs and their shadows looks very similar.

Ref: D35_20100909_2022_178_FB4 Young fieldmouse (wood mouse) + carrot + harvestman spider with leg shadows.jpg

01 Nov 2010

Looks like the robin initiated this little encounter.

Ref: D35_20100905_1754_183_FB4 Chaffinch male and robin squabbling (crop 1).jpg

The Robin's head is uncannily sharp on the original, so here is a 'zoom in'

Ref: D35_20100905_1754_183_FB4 Chaffinch male and robin squabbling (crop 2).jpg



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