Return to moorhen home page
Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day
A rook is just sticking it's beak into the left edge of the frame. Pigeons mostly defend themselves by hitting the opposition with their powerful wings. Here we think the Pigeon is just preparing 'in-case'.
Actually Pigeon and Corvids (like the Rook above and jackdaw here) usually get along fine. Here they are quietly feeding together easily in range of attack by the other, but preferring an Avian Gossip?
A Starling high in a Black Poplar tree already in it glorious breeding colours. The base of the beak turning blue indicates a male. The feathers around the neck are sticking out as spikes and catching a glint of a welcome bit of sunshine.
A Redwing awkward to see high up in a Black Poplar. Not many sightings this year, and not obviously part of a flock of Fieldfares as we have normally seen them in the past.
A Buzzard was using the trees at the brook as hunting perches. Here we caught the bird moving to a new perch on the left
The pair of Moorhens mostly frequenting the distant 'Round' pond are prospecting nest sites. This bird spent quite a while climbing about in the fallen Iris leaves.
"Double back somersault with half twist and single tail
This has to be the top of a leap from the ground - there is no vertical movement blur even at cameras full resolution.
We think this Bluetit and Robin are both landing from different directions. (There is usually very little wind in this sheltered hedge bottom so the routine 'landing into the wind' rule doesn't apply).
A single Corn grain is preferred to a mouthful of perfectly good fruit pulp. No wonder humans put so much effort into corn production!
This Barn Owl made this majestic arrival and spent about 20 minutes exploring the land around the post with eyes and hearing. The wind was near gale force (it brought down several branches) and was making a mess of the elegant Owl as you see lower right.
The Barn owl left for a few minutes and then returned to provide this unusual view. Every time we see the how flat the facial disc is we are 'surprised'.
All but the tail tip of our very light coloured pheasant, one of 5 males we know of having various hues.
The Tree Sparrows are appearing intermittently, here flying in to the peanut feeder next to a Bluetit that probably took off in fright.
This is our most advanced clump of Snowdrops situated on the bank on the east end of the main pond, almost never in sunshine.
Every cloud does NOT have a silver lining metaphorically or otherwise, but some do. A gloomy sunset was unexpectedly lightened by the bright cloud edge and delightful ray effect above the cloud
The Muntjac Deer female looks like she is targeting the remains of the apple on the grass, tongue out in anticipation of a bit of juicy chomp.
"Rook are black except for their beaks"
In that case black can come in a lovely variety of blacks!
Oh dear - we think Rooks look delightful.
That's what living with them for 25 years does to the brain!
In the morning twilight this Barn Owl landed on the post top but left in less than 45 seconds (the repeat rate of the automatic camera).
This Tawny Owl stayed for 7 minutes, almost entirely with back to camera, so we present just the landing, a bit hazy through the steamed up window. We have not worked out what the thin line crossing the primary feathers on the right might be.
We watched this 24 minute stay by a Barn Owl shortly after dark as a misty image on the CCTV repeater. The bird was very active, atypically moving around a lot on the top of the post. Normally they stay where they land and use that wonderful neck to look in any direction they want.
In the early hours of the following morning the same Barn Owl returned for 10 minutes in a strong wind. In the rightmost image you can see how the soft feathers (that allow near silent flight) have been spread and flattened into a disc of grey on the head.
Two Collared Doves - probably a pair.
The bird on the left has an abnormal down-curving upper beak - we think the bottom beak tip was broken off and this is how the beak reacts.
The bird on the right is a colour we have never noticed before - a beautiful soft brown described as Grey-buff in some books. Genuine colour seen less well in some other frames.
To us Collared Doves have been about ever since we started identifying birds seriously in the 1970s, but apparently these delicate birds were first observed in the UK in 1955, having 'originated' from India.
Like another 'import' - Little Owls - we think they are lovely!
Two Fieldmice (Wood Mice) shortly after dark - what a pair of Sweeties!
A Chilly young bunny - we hope it found enough food to make the trip worthwhile.
Male Chaffinch attacking a Great Tit that looks all too
ready to defend it's right to be by the huge peanut feeder
just off the right frame edge.
Who 'blinked' first?
A Robin watching us watching him from the top of an old hedge.
No that's not snow below the Robin - just the accumulation of several days of frost. The 'Reeds' are actually mostly old Yellow Flag Iris fronds.
This barn Owl made 2 short visits 4 minutes apart, the second visit bringing along what we think is a Shrew. In order here the first landing, 4 minutes later the second landing with prey in beak, and 45 seconds later the prey has apparently been swallowed in one beakful followed by this moment or two's smug contemplation!
A closer look at the landing with the prey. We think we can see the pointed snout, and it is a bit small for a mouse or Vole.
Arriving along the sense beam, this barn Owl triggered the photo in advance of arriving at the post.
This Tawny Owl paid a 5 minute visit around 2:20 a.m. We know from waking from the noise of rain on the roof that it rained heavily in the early hours (10mm - about half inch - in the gauge overnight) and the owl at the right is clearly covered in water drops. The landing at the left shows the owl with the nictitating membranes partly closed over the eyes - quite common for landing birds. We have heard it said that Owls can not hunt in the rain - perhaps this limitation is species specific.
Our first sighting of a pheasant for months is this partial image of an atypically light coloured male. The 2 Brown tones normally providing a background seem to be white on this bird, but other colours are normal, so its not an Albino. Rather too lightly coloured for the fox not to notice him we fear.
Morning and afternoon moments of a Bluetit in flight, montaged to make a little composition of unusually sharp images in flight.
Enjoy the claws and their shadow on the wings of this Great Tit in flight.
An interesting position for this male Great Spotted Woodpecker on the vertical trunk of the Ash tree on the main pond island. The bird wasn't pleased to spot the photographer (who was perishing cold at an open upstairs window) and he soon flew away.
Looking through a 'V' in the same intervening Ash tree we see a Bluetit picking over the buds of this winter flowering Viburnum'Burkwoodii'.
Where do they get the energy. Are yes - an endless supply of corn converted into testosterone!
At another site this Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) caught in mid-leap - this is a wide view including the shadow of the mouse on the ground at the right.
A close view of the little fellow. Isn't he/she lovely?
Over one night we had 3 visits by the same Barn Owl. This pairing
is from the second visit.
The third visit in indexed separately after a Tawny owl on the same night.
Return to image of the day
Newer page of archive Older page of archive