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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

30 Sep 2014

This is a sequence of 4 images of a single event captured by 2 cameras.
The Tawny Owl spent about 5 minutes on the post top (mostly with back to camera) and the final frame we have of the owl sees the bird fixated on something down and to the right - the meadow camera trap.

Ref: D01_20140728_0335_015 Tawny Owl catching Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) from meadow Post 2 of 4 (crop).jpg

We think this is what the Tawny Owl had heard - a fieldmouse (wood mouse). It is possible that the camera being tripped may have alerted the Owl, but they do mostly hunt by sound.

Ref: E62_20140728_0337_510_FB5 Tawny Owl catching Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) from meadow Post 3 of 4 (crop).jpg

The Tawny owl dives down onto what is probably the same Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) and grabs it in the Owls left Claws (so on the right here). The image is very high contrast between full flash on white feathers under the wing, and the claws and mouse shaded by the body of the bird. We have done our best to make all the elements visible, at the expense of some cosmetic qualities.

Ref: E62_20140728_0339_511_FB5 Tawny Owl catching Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) from meadow Post 4 of 4 (crop 1).jpg

Still not sure about the mouse?
Here is the foot with the back of the mouse extending left. The Mouse's tail touches the claws on the other foot.

Ref: E62_20140728_0339_511_FB5 Tawny Owl catching Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) from meadow Post 4 of 4 (detail crop 2).jpg

29 Sep 2014

This is a genuine single frame of a couple of fieldmice (wood mice) just after midnight.
The mouse near the camera has been selectively sharpened.

Ref: E63_20140723_0048_247_FB1 2 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) face to face over stone (crop).jpg

28 Sep 2014

A male Banded Demoiselle Damselfly delicately resting on a grass seed head.

Ref: DF2_20140722_1552_197 Banded Demoiselle Damselfly male on grass steam (crop).jpg

A male Banded Demoiselle Damselfly take-off from the grass seed head which is already starting to spring back up.

Ref: DF2_20140722_1553_209 Banded Demoiselle Damselfly male taking off from grass steam (crop).jpg

A male Banded Demoiselle Damselfly showing all 4 wings slightly spread, and a lovely shadow

Ref: DF2_20140722_1555_215 Banded Demoiselle Damselfly male on leaf.jpg

27 Sep 2014

Here on a Buddleia this Peacock Butterfly has it's proboscis clearly down the centre of one of the florets. The Proboscis is a figure of 8 cross-section which stops it getting in a tangle when it rolls it up.

Ref: DF2_20140722_1741_253 Peacock butterfly with proboscis in centre of Buddleia flower (crop).jpg

The Peacock butterflies also feed en-masse on Teasel flowers. Here are 2 sharing either side of a single Teasel head.

Ref: DF2_20140722_1015_169 2 Peacock Butterflies feeding on single Teasel head (crop).jpg

2014 has been a good year for Peacock butterflies, with at least 20 feeding in the meadow on sunny days.

Ref: DF2_20140722_1016_174 3 Peacock Butterflies feeding on 3 Teasel heads (crop).jpg

26 Sep 2014

We caught this Buff-tip moth in our moth trap. While he warmed up we photographed him on a dead twig to show how good the camouflage is.

Ref: P10_20140719_1343_168 Buff-tip Moth on twig (crop).jpg

25 Sep 2014

The enormously long antennae tell you that this is a Cricket rather than a Grasshopper. It is a pre-adult form (a Nymph) probably a few moults before adulthood.

Ref: DF2_20140720_1012_004 Short (q) winged Conehead Cricket nymph (crop).jpg

24 Sep 2014

A male Brown Hawker Dragonfly flying up the path we were standing on.

Ref: DF2_20140718_1234_107-109 Brown Hawker Dragonfly male in climbing flight towards camera @ 7fps 1-3 of 3 (accurate montage).jpg

A male Brown Hawker Dragonfly flying by. We have approximately halved the overall width to give a better view of the insect

Ref: DF2_20140718_1236_165-168 Brown Hawker Dragonfly male in flight @ 7fps 3-6 of 8 (approx halved width montage).jpg

23 Sep 2014

5 Marmalade Hoverflies visiting a single Thistle flower

Ref: DF2_20140715_1213_003 5 Marmalade Hoverflies (Episyrphus balteatus) on thistle flower (crop 1).jpg

This Gatekeeper butterfly pair are mating. They are also known as the Hedge Brown, but we prefer Gatekeeper - a name given them by a tendency to gather around gate posts. They landed here in coupled position after several false landings on other foliage.

Ref: DF2_20140715_1519_011 Gatekeeper Butterflies mating.jpg

22 Sep 2014

When the Moorhen dominated the ponds they would not tolerate duck visits. But the new Moorhens are less 'established'. Moorhen parents and 2 chicks at the back and mother duck and 3 of her 7 (4 off to the right) ducklings nearer the camera.

Ref: D5C_20140716_1027_215 Moorhen adult + 2 juveniles + Mallard duck female and 3 (of 7) ducklings (crop).jpg

A juvenile enjoying a good preen - preening for birds is instinctive.

Ref: D5C_20140716_1048_245 Mallard duckling on bank of pond with siblings.jpg

OK kids - time to line up and go.

Ref: DF2_20140716_1059_153 7 ducklings preening + mallard duck mother (adjusted crop).jpg

21 Sep 2014

With the 2 juveniles mostly looking after themselves, the 2 parent Moorhen are enjoying some 'quality time' together. One is watching the other have a vigorous bath. In the order left to right, top to bottom, the 2nd and 3rd frames surprised us by the amount of turning of the bather's head as it shook itself with the yellow beak tip quite near vertical. We have never thought of moorhen as particularly flexible.

Ref: D5C_20140715_1341_016-026 Moorhen adult bathing as mate watches selected 1-4 of 4 (montage).jpg

20 Sep 2014

The first record in 25 years of a Hare on our land. They may have ventured here when we had just a barbed Wire fence - augmented subsequently to stop stray sheep. But Hares are nervous animals and might not like the camera noise and flash - this was the only pic we got at this camera trap.

Ref: E62_20140712_2052_097_FB5 Hare - 1st sighting ever in our patch (crop).jpg

19 Sep 2014

This very nice juvenile Magpie shakes out the feathers for us to admire.

Ref: E63_20140710_1758_009_FB1 Magpie juvenile.jpg

18 Sep 2014

This female Banded Demoiselle damselfly is substantially smaller than we are used to seeing. These insects can only metamorphose to the same weight of insect they reached as Nymphs - they don't grow as adults.
This montage at about 7 fps has been stretched horizontally to remove overlaps.

Ref: DF2_20140712_1009_105-108 Banded Demoiselle damselfly female (atypically small) landing on Iris frond 1-4 of 5 (impression montage).jpg

17 Sep 2014

This buzzard really likes the crossbar on this particular post. This time rather than diving down it made a few wingbeats and then found a thermal to lift it into the clouds. About 7 fps, with the 3rd frame omitted., this is about 2 seconds.

Ref: DF2_20140712_1533_011-022 Buzzard flying from 11kV pole 01+02+04-12 of 14 (accurate montage 2).jpg

This buzzard flew by atypically close and we grabbed the moment. This is the 1st and 3rd of the best, but NOT accurately spaced against the bland sky

Ref: DF2_20140707_0716_136+138 Buzzard in flight 1+3 of 4 (arbitrary montage).jpg

16 Sep 2014

This Spotted Cranefly is described as a common pest in gardens, but we think it is rather lovely.

Ref: DF2_20140710_1001_008 Spotted Cranefly (Nephrotoma appendiculata) on concrete with shadow (crop 2).jpg

15 Sep 2014

A buzzard has taken to perching on the crossbar of this 11KV power pole. Here we were lucky to catch the whole dive down from crossbar to ground, disappearing behind the cut Oil-seed rape. This is an accurate montage at 7 fps, so about 3 seconds to make a wonderfully controlled descent. Frame 3 is skipped as the bird is initially moving too slowly for it to fit in.

Ref: DF2_20140708_1618_144+145+147-164 Buzzard diving to ground from 11KV post @7fps 01+02+04--21 of 22 (accurate montage 1).jpg

Even at the full size we allow here (768 pixels high, 1024 pixels across) the bird shows little detail, so we have cut the montage into 2 side by side for a better view. There is so little wing adjustment needed to maintain speed and direction it may look like we just duplicated images, but this is completely genuine.

Ref: DF2_20140708_1618_144+145+147-164 Buzzard diving to ground from 11KV post @7fps 01+02+04--21 of 22 (accurate montage 2).jpg

14 Sep 2014

A pristine Comma Butterfly ('comma' is on the other side of the wing) perched on a frond of Hop Sedge around the Duck shaped pond.

Ref: DF2_20140708_1612_139 Comma Butterfly on Hop sedge.jpg

A pristine Comma butterfly showing white 'comma' on the bottom of the wing and the bright orange top of wing.

Ref: DF2_20140710_1636_030 Comma Butterfly on Hop sedge frond showing both sides of wing (crop).jpg

13 Sep 2014

This year we have a good number of Small Tortoiseshell Butterflies. Here one is feeding on a thistle flower, surrounded by 3 Red Soldier Beetles. While checking our IDs, we found the Beetles described as the 'Hogweed Bonking Beetle' - a name very appropriate to how we often see them!

Ref: DF2_20140708_1610_129 Small Tortoiseshell butterfly + 3 Red Soldier Beetles on Thistle heads (crop).jpg

12 Sep 2014

A Marmalade Hoverfly, perhaps 15mm long.

Ref: DF2_20140707_1109_006 Marmalade Hoverfly.jpg

One patch of Great Willow Herb plants gets speckled by dozens of these little jewels in the sunshine. They are tiny - about 5mm long (fifth of an inch) excluding antennae.

Ref: DF2_20140708_0918_072 Dock Leaf Beetle (Gastrophysa viridula) (q) about 5mm long on Great Willow Herb leaf.jpg

11 Sep 2014

One of our adult Moorhen enjoying a couple of minutes bathing. Note how dry the feathers remain. The final splash saw the bird completely disappear underwater - the cameras continuous frames ran out before it popped back up!

Ref: D5C_20140707_1353_045+1354_062+068+072 Moorhen adult bathing & diving in main pond 02+05+06+09 of 11 (montage).jpg

A better view of a frame between the last two in the montage.

Ref: D5C_20140707_1354_069 Moorhen adult bathing & diving in main pond 07 of 11 (crop 3).jpg

10 Sep 2014

Hold it - Turn - Hold it - Turn - Hold it
Several Tawny Owl visits on consecutive days provided these samples. One individual left and centre visiting twice to sandwich midnight, and a different Tawny owl (darker facial disc) in the early hours of the next night.

Ref: D01_20140703_2313_003+20140704_0141_007+20140705_0124_012_FB6 Tawny owls visits over 2 nights (montage).jpg

09 Sep 2014

Wood Pigeons are common but we think under-appreciated. The body contour feathers, along with the preening power, produce a wonderful velvet mat appearance all over the body.

Ref: E63_20140701_1827_081_FB1 Wood pigeon flapping wings behind stone.jpg

08 Sep 2014

Over 10 minutes this Grey Squirrel repulsed several attempts by the Magpies to access the freshly baited stone. Bottom left is our favourite, but the quality won't stand a larger image.

Ref: E63_20140701_1758_067-1808_073_FB1 Grey Squirrel repeatedly chasing away Magpie(s) over 10 minutes 1-4 of 4 (montage).jpg

07 Sep 2014

A small Tortoiseshell butterfly feeding on Blackberry flowers. There seems to have been a resurgence of this butterfly this year.

Ref: DF2_20140630_1058_025 Small Tortoiseshell butterfly feeding on blackberry flower.jpg

Near a sheet of corrugated iron (to attract snakes but this year abandoned even by the ants!) we find this blackberry (Bramble) flower we have not noticed before with larger and more complex stamens than normal. It seems to be an Elm-Leaf Blackberry (Rubus ulmifolius) that has somehow found it's way to our patch and is growing a healthy clump.

Ref: DF2_20140630_1058_028 Blackberry Elm-Leaf (Rubus ulmifolius) flowers and part leaf (crop).jpg

06 Sep 2014

The two moorhen chick are growing fast - here they are spending a while on fallen Iris fronds.

Ref: D5C_20140702_0942_132 2 Moorhen chicks walking down fallen Iris leaves.jpg

The two moorhen chick are growing fast and still enjoying each others company. One here is stretching its right leg (there is nothing wrong with it) while the other is showing us his wing feathers 'in-pin' alongside the leg.

Ref: D5C_20140704_1704_017 2 Moorhen Chicks on brood platform one stretching & other showing wings in pin (crop).jpg

05 Sep 2014

A young fox drawn to the side of the rock to lick off the last traces of peanut butter. The foxes fur is quite wet, probably from pushing through long grass.

Ref: E63_20140626_2338_035_FB1 Fox with wet fur licking end of stone (crop).jpg

04 Sep 2014

The higher the sun is in the sky, the lower to the horizon a rainbow appears. When the sun is high enough the bow would be below the horizon and not appear.

Ref: DF2_20140629_1749_291+294 Rainbow low in sky (accurate montage for width).jpg

03 Sep 2014

A young Jackdaw on the left has just received another beakful of peanut fragments. The nuts take a while to wheedle in pieces, so it is unusual to catch the moment.

Ref: E60_20140629_1943_140_FB3 Jackdaw adult feeding juvenile.jpg

We have not so far seen Rooks feeding youngsters at the hi-res photo sites or at the peanut feeders (their beaks are just too large). But here in the orchard a 'trail camera' catches a young rook demanding to be fed by a less than enthusiastic parent.

Ref: SW4_20140628_1816_096_SC2 Rook juvenile begging from adult.jpg

02 Sep 2014

A chaffinch singing from a tree only a few metres away at the South East corner of our patch. You can see the blue coating of his beak is gradually wearing away.

Ref: DF2_20140616_0726_019 Chaffinch male singing from branch of conifer (crop 2).jpg

01 Sep 2014

A pair of Ringlet Butterflies mating in the hedge by our access track.

Ref: DF2_20140625_1558_144 Ringlet Butterflies mating on Blackberry leaf (crop 2).jpg

Small Tortoiseshell butterflies 'courting'. We saw this behaviour again inside a blackberry tangle, but these were on the slate that keeps the rain off the camera window of a photo site. The brown fur beneath them includes some skin and is quite coarse - we think it might be from a badger skirmish we know nothing about.

Ref: DF2_20140620_1745_103 2 Small Tortoiseshell butterflies courting on slate over FB5 camera (crop).jpg



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