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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 Jul 2013

Surprise pic of the year so far was this Sparrowhawk taken by the kitchen window camera. The first image was of landing with back to camera, and this second of the bird preening. It is facing away from us bending back with the beak in the base of it's tail.

Ref: E60_20130615_2129_197_FB3 Sparrowhawk back to camera but preening to show eye (crop 1).jpg

This un-fudged detail of the head shows what we call the 'mad yellow eye', unusually with iris fully open in the poor light

Ref: E60_20130615_2129_197_FB3 Sparrowhawk back to camera but preening to show eye (crop 4).jpg

30 Jul 2013

After the awful Spring the white variant emerged about 2 weeks later than usual, but this 'Pink' wild rose (the root stock of a cultivar) arrived around it's usual time of year

Ref: DF1_20130616_1758_140 Wild Rose from cultivar root stock (crop).jpg

The pink wild rose is the root stock of a cultivar of this pretty yellow rose which unfortunately bleaches to white almost as soon as it is open.

Ref: DF1_20130616_1804_156 Yellow rose near NE corner.jpg

29 Jul 2013

Green Alkanet is very attractive to many insects. This is a largish Bumble-bee on a flower, but there isn't enough body detail for us to make a positive ID.

Ref: DF1_20130615_1234_044 Bumble-bee (unident) on Green Alkanet.jpg

Green Alkanet is very attractive to many insects. This is an atypically small species of Bumble-bee without a common name, here caught hovering at a flower.

Ref: DF1_20130615_1235_047 Bumble-bee (Bombus pratorum (q)) hovering at Green Alkanet flower (crop).jpg

28 Jul 2013

This vivid beetle on a grass stem is probably Pyrochroa Serraticornis. Some identification books also name this as the 'Cardinal Beetle' while other books name a similar (but different) species as such.
The Antenna near us is foreshortened to a black circle but there is nothing 'wrong' with it as we can see in other less satisfying images.

Ref: DF1_20130615_1239_053 Cardinal Beetle variant (Pyrochroa Serraticornis) with left antenna hidden by foreshortening (crop).jpg

27 Jul 2013

This young fox makes several appearances each week at the moment and is here caught in a strange posture which reminds us of a soft toy left by a child.

Ref: D5C_20130616_0339_110_FB2 Young Fox visiting site 3 times in single night 3 of 3 (crop).jpg

We see a fox most nights at the Infra-Red (IR) stealth cameras. Here one kept still enough during the exposure to make a decent photo.

Ref: SW1_20130617_2200_054_SC1 Fox (IR crop).jpg

26 Jul 2013

These white wild rose flowers smell divine even as you walk down the other side of the hedge! We have a mixture of 'bought' wild rose, and root stocks of cultivars not controlled by pruning. The pink varieties have far less aroma.

Ref: P10_20130607_1057_704 Wild Rose Flower (crop).jpg

25 Jul 2013

Tree Sparrows breed here though we don't know where this year. Here a youngster is demanding and receiving peanut fragments, and picking up a few grains on its own while the parent was hammering away to get out the next beakful!

Ref: DC1_20130612_1052_040 Tree Sparrow feeding peanut fragments to youngster (crop).jpg

24 Jul 2013

This female chaffinch shows a healing injury near the base of the right wing, but we love the spread of the wings and the translucent shadows.

Ref: D5C_20130610_1757_012_FB2 Chaffinch female flying over log (crop).jpg

23 Jul 2013

Green Alkanet is a magnet for what bees there are. This bumble-bee spent at least several minutes crawling around the flowers. We didn't notice a second visitor until we processed the image - some sort of fly on the lower left flower.

Ref: A77_20130611_1255_038 Bumble-Bee (Bombus Lucorum (q)) & unident fly on Green Alkanet flower (crop).jpg

22 Jul 2013

A pair of Large Red Damselflies are laying eggs in the main pond. The female (lower) is ovipositing on the pond lily leaf below the water surface, as you can see from the floating duckweed.

Ref: DF1_20130607_1255_044 Large Red Damselfly pair laying in main pond (crop).jpg

A pair of Azure Damselflies laying eggs in the main pond. The female (lower) is ovipositing on a fallen stem below the water surface, as you can see from the floating duckweed.

Ref: DF1_20130607_1256_054 Azure Damselfly pair laying in main pond (crop).jpg

21 Jul 2013

The Bluetits spend quite a while some days looking for insects on the vegetation around the main pond to take back to the nestlings. The Flag Iris is flowering for its few days extravaganza, and encourages the tits out where we can photograph them.

Ref: DC1_20130607_0954_012-14 Bluetit exploring Yellow Flag Iris flower for insects & flying off 2-4 of 4 (horiz spread montage).jpg

20 Jul 2013

A Tree Sparrow enjoying a good shake-out

Ref: D3A_20130609_1920_112_FB1 Tree Sparrow shaking out feathers.jpg

19 Jul 2013

A female Great spotted Woodpecker enjoying the easy feed of peanut butter.

Ref: D01_20130607_1817_126 Great Spotted Woodpecker female eating peanut butter from side of meadow post 1 of 3 (crop).jpg

A male Great Spotted Woodpecker on the perch outside the kitchen window.

Ref: DC1_20130607_1012_030 Great Spotted Woodpecker male head detail.jpg

18 Jul 2013

Each year (so far) the 'Tawny owl' box is used by Jackdaws. For a while in Spring this box was regularly fought over by 4 jackdaws, sometimes all in the box at once banging about and screaming at each other. 1 pair won the war and made a nest to raise these 2 beautiful youngsters.

Ref: P34_20130602_0957_310 2 Jackdaw nestlings in Tawny owl box (crop).jpg

17 Jul 2013

This first sighting of the year of a female Large Red Damselfly found her in this curved position. It always amazed us now much the joints on the abdomen can bend while the whole body looks so rigid when straight.

Ref: DF1_20130603_1238_029 Large Red Damselfly female on tree leaf in looped position (crop).jpg

16 Jul 2013

We had never noticed Walnut tree flowers until prompted by a local farmer. Single trees have both female flowers and male catkins, but in separate clusters. This is a cluster of male catkins we only found on a tall tree about 4 metres above the ground.

Ref: A77_20130604_0800_001 Walnut tree catkins (male) (crop).jpg

This is a close-up of the tiny female flower - only a bit over eye height this time. We are not surprised we have missed the whole affair.

Ref: A77_20130604_0806_020 Walnut tree flowers (female) (crop).jpg

15 Jul 2013

A buzzard made a lazy flight over the house where we caught this backlit moment with head turned as if a classic eagle! The nick in the birds right wing identifies it as a 'regular'.

Ref: DF1_20130602_0953_078 Buzzard gliding overhead with head turned showing hooked beak.jpg

The Rook on the left spent 5 minutes harassing this unbelievably tatty buzzard with no tail to mention and whole groups of flight feathers damaged or missing. But it is an old and experienced bird - it knew to take almost no notice of the noisy & aggressive Rook.

Ref: DF1_20130606_1138_101 Buzzard very tatty with missing wing and tail feathers being harassed by Rook.jpg

14 Jul 2013

Some sort of Cuckoo Bee (one that lays in the nest of other bumble bee nests) was enjoying feeding on a Bluebell (or some sort of hybrid).

Ref: DF1_20130602_0947_006 Cuckoo Bee (Psithyrus vestalis (q)) on bluebell.jpg

A Better view of the abdomen to help with the ID for the Cuckoo Bee.

Ref: DF1_20130602_0947_013 Cuckoo Bee (Psithyrus vestalis (q)) on leaf (crop 2).jpg

13 Jul 2013

This Magpie is undoubtedly collecting twigs to build up the nest. But flying with this awkward shaped twig must be a bit weird, and even harder to build into a nest.

Ref: D36_20130530_0828_002_FB4 Magpie with angular twig (crop).jpg

12 Jul 2013

The flying male Chaffinch's claws are curled so we think that this is a greeting to the female on the ground rather than a threat.

Ref: D45_20130530_1713_025_FB1 Chaffinch male in flight over female on ground (crop).jpg

11 Jul 2013

A fieldmouse (wood mouse) in the dark near midnight may have had some moonlight with which to survey the surroundings.

Ref: D5C_20130530_2301_065_FB2 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) on tip of raised end of log.jpg

10 Jul 2013

We have perhaps 15 of these evergreen 'Lodgepole Pine' trees now mostly about 8 metres tall. This is a general view up the tree from near the base.

Ref: P10_20130604_1215_681 Lodgepole Pine in flower general view looking up (crop).jpg

A detail showing

  1. Bottom Right - the male flower
  2. Top - the female flower - always at a tip - sometimes a double or treble flower
  3. Bottom left - a cone from last year

Ref: P10_20130604_1215_675 Lodgepole Pine flower female (top) + male (bottom right) + cone (bottom left) (crop).jpg

The Lodgepole Pine trees produce copious quantities of a quite coarse pollen at the slightest touch or pulse of wind.

Ref: DF1_20130531_1041_015 Lodgepole pine trees releasing pollen 5 of 6 (crop).jpg

To catch the pollen is the flower - here in some detail. Pine trees are full of resin you see leaking at the left which makes the wood unexpectedly flammable (or inflammable if you prefer - same meaning).

Ref: P10_20130604_1212_663 Lodgepole Pine flower female detail (crop).jpg

09 Jul 2013

As an upcoming badger cull 'experiment' starts in some of the UK all we can hope is that nobody sets their sites on our area (not know to harbour TB). Anyway, we see badgers on the Infra-Red (IR) cameras most nights - here is one photographed about 5 seconds apart - and hope this continues.

Ref: SW1_20130527_0242_184+185_SC1 Badger walking around daffodils 1+2 of 2 (adjusted montage).jpg

08 Jul 2013

This unusually chaotic sky made of Cirrus ice clouds was the harbinger of a patch of bad weather.

Ref: P10_20130527_1758_622 Chaotic sky of mostly Cirrus 3 of 9 (crop).jpg

07 Jul 2013

Accurate montage (at about 7 fps) of a little Egret Flying past.

Ref: DF1_20130527_1032_032-034 Little egret flyby into headwind 01-03 of 13 (accurate montage).jpg

A slightly horizontally stretched montage (at about 7 fps) of a little Egret Flying past.

Ref: DF1_20130527_1032_035-039 Little egret flyby 04-08 of 13 (vert acc slight stretched hor montage).jpg

06 Jul 2013

  1. Good news - The buzzard has a reasonable size rabbit in its talons to take back to the nest.
  2. Bad news - the way back to the nest lies over at least 2 rookeries
The problem for the buzzard is that it's weapon is the talons now occupied holding the rabbit. To defend itself it would have to drop it's catch, and the Rooks know it!

Ref: DF1_20130525_0857_016 Buzzard harassed by 10 (2 out of crop) rooks (crop).jpg

The number of birds in pursuit reduces as the action moves away from the rookery.

Ref: DF1_20130525_0900_193-194 Rooks mobbing Buzzard carrying dead rabbit in talons 2+3 of 4 (montage for clarity).jpg

One rook is now continuing the attack - this montage photographed at about 5 fps - this montage spans about half a second.

Ref: DF1_20130525_0900_225-227 Rook harassing Buzzard carrying dead rabbit in talons 2-4 of 4 (arbitrary montage).jpg

Finally free of pursuit, we get a better view of what looks like a young rabbit in the claws. 800 metres on we had a hazy view of a similar mobbing as it arrived over another rookery.

Ref: DF1_20130525_0900_243 Buzzard carrying dead rabbit in claws (crop).jpg

05 Jul 2013

Elegant Jay landing on the tree-stump.

Ref: D36_20130524_0722_025_FB4 Jay (crop).jpg

3 minutes earlier the Jay was checking out the ground level site. When we first saw this image we thought something was shading the back of the bird. Closer inspection of this and other images shows that Jay plumage really does have a front and back discontinuity that probably breaks up the outline in foliage.

Ref: D5C_20130524_0719_039_FB2 Jay rear view highlighting forward-back colour split.jpg

04 Jul 2013

"Stop fiddling around preening and FEED ME!"
There was a family group of 4 rooks on the edge of the farm track (about 100 metres away from the camera) from where we could clearly hear the youngster demanding the next beakful.

Ref: DF1_20130527_0717_029 4 Rooks family group including youngster begging (crop).jpg

03 Jul 2013

Blossom of one of our multi-decade old apple trees.

Ref: A77_20130517_1644_020 Apple Blossom (crop).jpg

A Horse chestnut 'candle' of flowers at about head height.
This is our 9th try at taking a sequence of bud through to conker of a single candle

Ref: P10_20130523_0712_581 Horse-chestnut Flower 9 (crop 2).jpg

02 Jul 2013

For a while a common visitor, the Yellowhammer is now a once-a week photo or sighting. You really can't miss the glow of yellow when a male flies by (the females are not so brilliant)

Ref: D45_20130522_1948_177_FB1 Yellowhammer male (crop).jpg

01 Jul 2013

No idea what is going on here - a un-fudged single frame of one fieldmouse (wood mouse) in a vertical leap over another on the ground.

Ref: D45_20130520_2127_052_FB1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) with one vertical above the ground (crop).jpg



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