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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

30 Nov 2011

In a wonderful flurry of wings the robin that 'owns' this site sees off the long-suffering dunnock. A male Chaffinch just watches - they seem to be more evenly matched & the robin may get more resistance.

Ref: D45_20111018_1803_165_FB1 Robin taking off to see off flying Dunnock as Chaffinch male watches (crop).jpg

2 days later the Robin and Dunnock are still skirmishing

Ref: D45_20111020_0730_286_FB1 Robin taking off to see off arriving Dunnock (crop).jpg

29 Nov 2011

Now all the posts along the bridleway have gone, Kestrels have started using the overhead powerlines as hunting perches - much less effort than all this hovering business! We caught this female as she made a flight along the wire to a new hunting position. We got the whole flight in 40 shots at about 7 per second but she landed unfortunately obscured by a nearer wire. Accurately montaging these 5 taken with Hanslope Church tower as the backdrop (less than half the height of the proposed wind turbine towers and 3 times as far away) gives an impression of the elegant bird.

Ref: DF1_20111019_1557_432-436 Kestrel female flying to new hunting perch on cables over bridleway to North @ 7fps 02-06 of 40 (accurate montage).jpg

This time not so elegant - defending herself from a rook, upside down to bring her talons into use as a weapon.

Ref: DF1_20111020_1316_028 Rook attacking Kestrel female in flight (crop).jpg

28 Nov 2011

A really sweet Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) amongst the leaf litter. The mouse is holding the corn grain in a single paw which got us thinking 'opposing thumbs' and the like. Well is seems mice have 5 digits on the hind legs, and 4 on the front, Voles the same, but Shrews 5 on each foot.

Ref: D45_20111008_2307_147_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) in autumn litter with single corn grain held in one paw (crop).jpg

27 Nov 2011

This is one of those images we have long hoped for - a fox actually catching a rodent. A mouse or vole is in the foxes partially open mouth sticking out of the left side as we see it. After this successful hunt the fox has started turning up at this site a few times a week.

Ref: D5C_20111003_0209_108_FB2 Fox catching rodent (mouse or vole) hanging out of side of mouth (crop 2).jpg

26 Nov 2011

Carrots tops and bottoms have been reliably one of the last foods to be taken, but suddenly they seem to be in favour with both birds and fieldmice (wood mice).

Ref: D45_20111011_1708_128_FB1 Great Tit flying off with tip of raw carrot.jpg

Ref: D5C_20111012_0457_073_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) carrying off raw carrot tip (crop).jpg

25 Nov 2011

A robin launching from the ground to see off an over-flying Dunnock.

Ref: D45_20111013_0718_373_FB1 Robin taking off from ground to attack overflying Dunnock (crop 1).jpg

24 Nov 2011

This is a 'compare and contrast' pair of images we might doubt if we hadn't taken them ourselves! First a rather murky sunrise (to the South East of course) but at a quite narrow angle (long focus lens).

Ref: DF1_20111014_0733_179 Sunrise from SE corner (crop).jpg

Turning to the South West 1 minute later with similar lens and it is so different - like something from an industrialised Japanese print. We didn't even notice stunning difference at the time, the camera colour balance is locked, and we haven't 'fiddled' anything. The images nowhere near overlap & wish now we had taken a wide-angle shot to see how the change occurred.

Ref: DF1_20111014_0734_186 Mist to SW from our SE corner (crop).jpg

23 Nov 2011

A heavy dew turned many spider's webs into jewelry, but the spider won't be pleased the web doesn't work any more!

Ref: P10_20110928_0800_494 Spiders web between teasels both drenched with dew (crop).jpg

22 Nov 2011

The Black Rustic moth appears almost black at rest, and the first time you see it fly it is quite a shock when the white rear wing is exposed. Its probably the normal 'don't be seen, and if you are seen, startle the hunter'.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1349_134+1445_234_FT1 Black Rustic moth (Aporophyla nigra) in flight with hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

The underwing class of moths go in for cryptic camouflage on the forewing, and the startle effect with an orange hindwing only showing as defence and in flight. This is two views of separate flights of a single insect to show predominantly the upper (left) and bottom wing surfaces.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1428_169+1429_172_FT1 Large Yellow Underwing moth in flight (montage separate flights).jpg

21 Nov 2011

We are expecting to be blighted with wind turbines 1000 metres towards the sunrise. Until then we shall make the most of the view we have. Here a dawn kestrel surveys the plot in search of breakfast.

Ref: D01_20111003_0730_011 Kestrel on telephone pole under rising sun (crop).jpg

A passing swoop into the wind of the female Kestrel on an overcast afternoon accurately montaged so you have a bit short of 1 second of flight here.

Ref: DF1_20111005_1600_009-013 Kestrel female turning in flight then diving behind trees 09-13 of 15 (accurate montage at 7fps).jpg

20 Nov 2011

The week this photo was taken TV was full of Dinosaur programmes.
So we present 'Stegomouse', a previously undetected cross between a Stegosaurus and a small Jurassic Mammal.
On the other hand it could be just a fieldmouse (wood mouse) in line of sight of a pine cone, but that's not as much fun!

Ref: D35_20110930_2131_029_FB4 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) with pine cone behind suggesting stegosaurus armour (crop @768).jpg

Enthusiasm: 10/10
Height: 3/10
Style: 0/10
Landing: Probably OK - they can twist to get their feet down like cats.

Ref: D5C_20111005_0629_075_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) in middle of chaotic leap (crop).jpg

19 Nov 2011

The previous day we have seen a number of craneflies, so we decided to have a go at some of them in flight. Typically - all we could find was this unusually willing flier but with a leg missing.

Ref: DA1_20111003_1229_012+1322_164_FT1 Cranefly in flight with Great Willow Herb seed head (montage).jpg

This appears to be a Cuckoo Bee but we don't have enough experience or the right books to definitively ID it. Cuckoo Bees do what their name says - they lay eggs in another bees nest.

Ref: DA1_20111003_1303_139+20111001_1605_043_FT1 unident Cuckoo Bee in flight with yellow Buddleia (montage).jpg

18 Nov 2011

This is 2 adjacent Blackberry (bramble) stems in the patio flowerbed - nature loves untidyness! One is in as good a fruit as we are getting this year, next to another in full flower with no hope of finishing the fruit but welcome by the insects. Is easy to think the plant has 'made a mistake' but maybe help feeding the insects in the autumn helps them overwinter to the benefit of next year's fruit - its all so complicated and interlinked.

Ref: P10_20111001_1041_557 Blackberry stems one with ripe fruit and the other flowering (crop).jpg

Our own un-cut hedges are awash with Hawthorn berries - first choice by birds looking for this type of food. The larger Blackthorn fruit is second choice by far.

Ref: P10_20111002_0814_604 Branch of Hawthorn berries.jpg

17 Nov 2011

Entry 1 for Twee Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) of the week

Ref: D45_20110930_2143_061_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) partly hidden by stone.jpg

Entry 2 for Twee Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) of the week

Ref: D45_20111002_0248_215_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) standing on rotten apple.jpg

Not so sweet - the mouse on the right may be trying to gain an advantage by using to apple to gain some height over the opponent.

Ref: D45_20110930_2117_054_FB1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) squabbling over apples (crop).jpg

16 Nov 2011

Kestrels currently visit tree and post tops at either end of the day when rooks that chase them off are elsewhere. Here one was preening in the treetop before flying off.
The flying sequence from 5 to 9 skips 4 & 6 which would have overlapped. The branch tip 3rd from the right is springing back up after the bird launched. The 4th from the left is a different branch from a bifurcate.

Ref: D01_20110926_1811_020-028 Kestrel preening and flying from conifer treetop 1+2+5+7-9 of 9 (accurate flight montage).jpg

15 Nov 2011

A great crop of pine cones this year (in fact getting more every year so far as the trees mature) and such opportunities are not lost on the squirrels, probably taking them off to bury in their winter cache.

Ref: D35_20110929_0829_082_FB4 Grey Squirrel with whole pine cone in mouth.jpg

Whole conkers are raining down and barely get a chance to bounce before a squirrel carries them off for the winter store.

Ref: D5C_20110927_0802_084_FB2 Grey Squirrel carrying off conker in husk (crop).jpg

14 Nov 2011

A cherry pip gets taken away for the fieldmouse (wood mouse) to bite open for the kernel

Ref: D45_20110928_0301_190_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) carrying off small fruit pip.jpg

This time the fieldmouse (wood mouse) carries off a whole cherry!

Ref: D45_20110928_0356_195_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) carrying off whole cherry.jpg

13 Nov 2011

An atypically very warm few days in Autumn brought out some moths. This is a Barred Sallow Moth which we haven't identified before.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1323_061+1447_250_FT1 Barred Sallow moth (Xanthia aurago) in flight with Autumn hawthorn leaves (montage).jpg

The Angle Shades Moth is very common, but doesn't normally oblige with flying on request for the camera!

Ref: DA1_20110929_1333_100+1447_246_FT1 Angle Shades moth (Phlogophora meticulosa) in flight with autumn hawthorn leaves (montage).jpg

12 Nov 2011

After initially fighting at one pond, two unexpectedly pristine (for late in the season) male Southern Hawker dragonflies settled to patrolling one pond each for hours on end for a few days - lovely to watch. We brought one of them in for a little photo-shoot.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1514_310+1450_253_FT1 Southern Hawker Dragonfly male in flight with autumn hawthorn leaves (montage).jpg

Here you are looking up at the male Southern Hawker dragonfly from underneath.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1516_316_FT1 Southern Hawker Dragonfly male in flight (crop).jpg

11 Nov 2011

A young chaffinch in the final stages of aerobraking before landing by a conker (which as far as we know they don't eat).

Ref: D45_20110925_1834_265_FB1 Chaffinch juvenile coming in to land by conker (crop 2).jpg

A sweet little mouse dwarfed by a couple of ordinary sized windfall apples that have obviously been pecked by assorted birds

Ref: D45_20110924_2305_159_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) between 2 apples (crop @576).jpg

10 Nov 2011

Two images of Autumn
We picked this hawthorn twig to 'decorate' the insects-in-flight set, but decided it deserved a picture of it's own.

Ref: DA1_20110929_1451_260_FT1 Hawthorn twig partly in autumn colour (crop).jpg

Hunting the cherry?
Autumn's plenty is collected and stored by many creatures before winters meanness. Many creature just put on weight, while other like this Grey Squirrel bury or hide food where they think they can find it later. Hence the saying 'Squirrel Away'?
This individual has some abnormality or healed injury to it's tail that shows as a coloured ring in the fur, but it uses its tail normally.

Ref: D5C_20110927_1758_087_FB2 Grey Squirrel turning to inspect fruit (crop).jpg

09 Nov 2011

We have an old apple tree (we call it the 'red' apple tree - the apples are red even when unripe and the apple flesh is pink as well) that is next to a pair of old but bushy oak trees. While collecting apples to store this Oak Bush Cricket suddenly leapt out of the trug onto the grass. We guess it either switched tree without realising (they grow into each other somewhat) or we knocked it down shaking branches to get the apples to drop. Crickets have these enormously long antennae - grasshoppers are much shorter.

Ref: P10_20110918_1331_446 Oak Bush Cricket female (crop).jpg

08 Nov 2011

A huge surprise was this Bat triggering the camera at the tree stump at 4:56 a.m. (2 hours before sunrise). We think it is a Pipistrelle bat that was hunting the insects that gather on the sticky fruit residue from the previous night's food.

Ref: D35_20110920_0456_056_FB4 Pipistrelle (q) Bat flying by tree-stump (crop).jpg

07 Nov 2011

A pair of leaping fieldmice (wood mice), the startling vertical one with his whiskers unfortunately disappearing off the edge of the camera frame.

Ref: D45_20110922_0409_311_FB1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) leaping and another on ground (adjusted crop).jpg

06 Nov 2011

We have never before seen before a mouse shaking out it's fur in the rain, droplets flying quite a height by mouse standards.
Slow motion movies of dogs drying themselves after a swim by counter-rotating twists are a favourite in animal programs, and we think this must be very similar on a different scale.

Ref: D5C_20110920_2003_090_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) shaking off water 2 of 3 (crop).jpg

05 Nov 2011

This apple is typically eating apple size - its reminds one how tiny the world of the fieldmouse (wood mouse) is.

Ref: D45_20110921_0349_210_FB1 fieldmouse (wood mouse) nibbling corn grain in paws next to apple larger than it is.jpg

A few damaged cherries from harvesting our favourite tree set the scale for this fieldmouse (wood mouse).

Ref: D45_20110922_2349_398_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) nibbling food surrounded by cherries and an apple.jpg

04 Nov 2011

"What - ME?"

Ref: D35_20110908_1150_002_FB4 Grey squirrel vertically poised over food with fly.jpg

We have seen teats on Grey Squirrel pics before, but never this obviously 'in use'. The Mum is tanking up on something we can't identify is obviously busy feeding youngsters.
Just what we need - more 'Rats with good PR' stripping bark off the trees!

Ref: D35_20110911_1610_001_FB4 Grey Squirrel female with obviously active teats.jpg

03 Nov 2011

The shadow falling on his friend on the ground indicates he is leaping towards the camera, which makes an unfortunate landing unlikely.

Ref: D5C_20110911_0544_137_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) leaping off log casting shadow onto another on ground (crop).jpg

At another site, a quieter moment with this little creature looking like it is really enjoying his tiny corn grain, mouth open in anticipation of the next bite.

Ref: D45_20110908_2006_043_FB1 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) with mouth open and food in paws.jpg

02 Nov 2011

A leaping mouse is watched by two on the ground

Ref: D5C_20110912_1942_091_FB2 3 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) with 1 in vertical leap (crop 1).jpg

The leaping mouse is unusually sharp, and we think the detail is worth a closer look.

Ref: D5C_20110912_1942_091_FB2 3 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) with 1 in vertical leap (crop 2 @576).jpg

01 Nov 2011

We found a dead young rabbit on one of the grass walks and took it to one of the photo sites. The only visitor taking an interest in it was this first Polecat of the season. It didn't drag the rabbit away, but we saw a few fresh bites next morning.

Ref: D5C_20110916_0318_324_FB2 Polecat inspecting dead rabbit but leaving it (crop).jpg



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