Return to moorhen home page

Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 Jul 2017

A pristine young Rabbit.
How twee can you get?

Ref: E62_20170601_1942_046_FB5 Rabbit juvenile grooming.jpg

A female Blackbird decorating, or being decorated by, Buttercups and Clover.

Ref: E62_20170604_1442_142_FB5 Blackbird female in buttercups and clover.jpg

30 Jul 2017

Young birds are being fed by their parents all over the site, mostly hidden from us inside bushes and tree. But here a couple of juvenile Great Tits are being introduced to the delights of the peanut feeder by an attentive parent of the right. This idyll was interrupted by the arrival of a Grey Squirrel.

Ref: D5C_20170606_1235_021+012 Great Tit parent feeding peanuts fragments to 2 chicks (montage for clarify).jpg

29 Jul 2017

Hares assume incredible positions when running, rear legs often well in front of the forelegs.

Ref: DF3_20170604_0844_051 Hare running over short grass 09 of 37 (crop).jpg

This Hare has reached full speed so even alternate frames are well separated at 7fps, but not quite well enough separated to include every frame

Ref: DF3_20170604_0845_102-122 Hare running over short grass alternate frames 23-43 of 50 (accurate montage).jpg

This corner of the crop viewed over the farm road from over own east hedge saw this Hare ambling over the weed-killed margin. At the time neither of us noticed the Rabbit leaping away in the background.

Ref: DF3_20170605_0650_157+160+164+165 Hare running at crop margin + Rabbit leaving crop 01+04+08+09 of 11 (impression montage).jpg

28 Jul 2017

Not 'improved' by the ugly back of the curbing, this hare ran across the grass. After the start this is every third frame at about 7fps.

Ref: DF3_20170604_0844_044-060 Hare running over short grass 02+03+06+09+12+15+18 of 37 (accurate montage).jpg

As we come through the blocked gate we have several times disturbed a Hare in the middle of the open grass area. Forewarned on this occasion the camera was ready to catch this 'escape' run and the leap up onto the concrete road and away.

Ref: DF3_20170607_0851_025-035 Hare startled into run up to and along Farm Road 02-12 of 12 (mostly accurate montage @7fp).jpg

This Hare didn't seem bothered by our presence even at Noon. It quietly turned round and seemed to 'Nod off'. We left it in peace.

Ref: DF3_20170605_1206_001+1207_006+007 Hare resting at crop edge 1-3 of 3 (montage).jpg

27 Jul 2017

A White Flag Iris in soft lighting that lets you see the structure. We see the white variety only along a hedge at a west side - never at the edge of the main pond where the Yellow form is rampant.

Ref: DF3_20170601_1352_026 White Flag Iris Flower.jpg

In a bright sunshine this double White Iris flower looks wonderful but is quite hard to see the structure in the harsh lighting.

Ref: DF3_20170603_1218_070 2 White Flag Iris flowers entwined and a few (not Lily) beetles.jpg

A little clump of beautiful wild rose flowers. The perfume greets you from yards away.

Ref: DF3_20170604_0839_037 Cluster of wild rose flowers.jpg

26 Jul 2017

'Our' Muntjac Deer is not really a 'Fawn' any longer - the spotted body has become the lovely brown and is often spotted feeding on its own.

Ref: E64_20170527_2141_100_FB2 Muntjac Deer juvenile (crop).jpg

25 Jul 2017

Walking down our concrete access track we spotted, but were apparently not spotted by, this male Muntjac Deer, with just stubs of the antlers, wandering quietly down the dew soaked margin between crop and the outside of our northern hedge, before quietly entering our patch though an access way we cut though the pig net years ago. This was at 05:40 a.m. (about 45 minutes after sunrise)

Ref: DF3_20170601_0540_029+030+032+041 Muntjac Deer male (antler stubs) at north hedge @ sunrise 01+02+04+10 of 10 (acc montage).jpg

Almost an hour after sunrise we watched the unhurried progress of this female Pheasant making her way into our patch via an access way cut through the pig net.

Ref: DF3_20170601_0546_047+050+053 Pheasant female stepping through opening cut in pig net fence 1+3+4 of 5 (impression montage).jpg

24 Jul 2017

On the Kitchen window bird table it was hard not to laugh at the antics of this Grey Squirrel appearing to be 'chasing a flea' - actually probably just 2 minutes of exuberant grooming we have since seen on other bird tables.

Ref: D5C_20170530_0739_007-0740_034 Grey Squirrel 2 minutes of frantic grooming 03+06-10+14+16 of 17 (montage).jpg

This young Rabbits position seems unexpectedly familiar.
A Movie publicity still? Images from a Peter Rabbit book?

Ref: E62_20170531_1950_147_FB5 Rabbit juvenile licking front paw.jpg

23 Jul 2017

An immature male Beautiful Demoiselle (common name of the species) Damselfly. One of a few moving around the site to find the warmest patch.

Ref: DF3_20170528_1530_135 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly immature male.jpg

Next day a female Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly arrived. Compared to the male note the lighter coloured wings, a more golden tail end (not very obvious through the golden wing here) and the different sexual organs at the tail tip

Ref: DF3_20170601_1602_044 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly female (crop).jpg

22 Jul 2017

Harlequin Ladybirds are here to stay - we might as well start enjoying them!

Ref: DF3_20170527_0947_019 Harlequin Ladybird.jpg

Harlequin Ladybirds are extremely variable - here the female is covered in large dark spots and the male with no spots at all! But THEY obviously know that they are the same species!

Ref: DF3_20170603_1220_078 Harlequin Ladybirds mating - one spotless the other many spots.jpg

21 Jul 2017

In last weeks 'Springwatch' we were amazed to see the film-makers reduced to using an infra-red camera drone to even find a Hare. We had no idea we were so lucky to see them even intermittently while out walking near the start of the day.

Ref: DF3_20170526_0601_019-021 Hare running along edge of crop 1-3 of 3 (accurate montage @ 7fps).jpg

This Hare was quietly leaving the corn crop, the rear legs well forward of the front legs and not even put on the ground yet.

Ref: DF3_20170526_0608_054 Hare leaving crop 4 of 7 (crop).jpg

This montage is very stretched along the line of the walk. Hares look so awkward when ambling about, but the gait clearly works for them.

Ref: DF3_20170526_0608_063-067 Hare running along edge of crop 1-5 of 5 (Horizontally stretched montage).jpg

20 Jul 2017

A 'frequent flier' is the White Ermine Moth, here echoing the colours of an Oxeye Daisy flower. This is a concoction of 3 separate flights

Ref: DA1_20170527_1130_136+1131_145+1145_185+1326_200_FT1 White Ermine Moth flights + Oxeye Daisy flower (montage 2).jpg

The striking Cinnabar Moth makes a great splash of colour.
The only other UK insect we know of with these colours (but different pattern) are the Burnet Moth family.

Ref: DA1_20170527_1147_191+1323_194_FT1 Cinnabar Moth + Hawthorn Twig (montage).jpg

19 Jul 2017

This is a Poplar Hawk Moth - a really impressive size insect.
The oranges patches don't appear in ID books - you only see them in flight.

Ref: DA1_20170527_1124_096+1323_195_FT1 Poplar Hawk Moth in flight + Hawthorn twig (montage).jpg

After photographing this moth in flight he seemed a bit reluctant to go. Here on a hand you get a sense of scale.

Ref: P10_20170527_1135_027 Poplar Hawk Moth in Maries hand.jpg

18 Jul 2017

An Angle Shades moth making 2 flights.

Ref: DA1_20170527_1108_047+1108+047+1324_198_FT1 Angle Shades Moth in flight (2 events) + Red Campion (montage).jpg

Our first record this moth - a Small Waved Umber with a really 'burnt line' appearance along the wings.

Ref: DA1_20170527_1112_063+1327_204_FT1 Small Waved Umber (Horisme vitalbata) in flight + curled Dock Leaf tip (montage).jpg

Another first for us, this time the Scorched Wing Moth.
We couldn't get it to fly for the camera, so here is our initial 'ID' pic.

Ref: DA1_20170527_1122_080_FT1 Scorched Wing Moth (Plagodis dolabraria) (crop on box).jpg

17 Jul 2017

3 views (from dozens) of a male Green Woodpecker clambering up the side of the meadow post and then moving around on the top.

Ref: D01_20170527_2002_004+2006_033+037_FB6 Green Woodpecker adult male on meadow post (montage).jpg

16 Jul 2017

A really uncomfortable looking Fox with fur drenched by either rain or wet foliage.

Ref: E62_20170520_0407_134_FB5 Fox in rain.jpg

Mother Muntjac Deer searches for some tasty morsel to supplement the endless grass. There is a good view of the left front hoof whose imprints get made in soft earth all over the site

Ref: E63_20170520_0724_078_FB1 Muntjac Deer female.jpg

15 Jul 2017

Well after Sunset we were lucky to spot the Muntjac Deer Fawn and his mum foraging about at the edge of the main pond. The Fawn now appears to be fully weaned. Here is a montage of the Fawn quietly stepping through the long grass.

Ref: DF4_20170521_2025_001+005_008 Muntjac Deer Fawn 1-3 of 3 (montage).jpg

And here the endearing mother and Fawn together image. The Fawn happily pushed through the stinging nettles and mother actually appeared to eat some.

Ref: DF4_20170521_2030_085 Muntjac Deer mother and fawn.jpg

14 Jul 2017

A Hare's quiet lollop down the concrete road is watched by the female Pheasant as well as us. There are typically 3 or 4 images between each we show here. The whole sequence available on request

Ref: DF3_20170523_0705_072-100 Hare Lolloping along Farm Road 01+05+11+17+21+24+27+29 of 31 (accurate montage).jpg

A closer view of a section of 3 images of the Hare from the longer montage.

Ref: DF3_20170523_0706_076+082+088 Hare Lolloping along Farm Road 05+11+17 of 31 (accurate montage).jpg

The Hare stopped for a moment - watching us watching him.

Ref: DF3_20170523_0706_079 Hare Lolloping along Farm Road 08 of 31 (crop).jpg

13 Jul 2017

A male Brimstone Butterfly stops on a Forget-me-not flower for a feed. The Proboscis is beginning to unwind and looks very like the 'hair spring' in a 'clockwork' watch - the only sort of watch there was for the first 30 years of our existence.

Ref: DF3_20170521_1310_079 Brimstone Butterfly male showing spiralled proboscis on Forget-me-not flower (crop 2).jpg

We have a particular liking for Allium flowers - globes of tiny flowers with a pleasing symmetry. The Honey-Bees like them as well.

Ref: DF3_20170521_1315_089 Honey Bee feeding on Purple Allium.jpg

12 Jul 2017

The wild Roses are starting to appear - you smell them before you see them. This flower bud is opening

Ref: DF3_20170523_1759_026 Wild Rose opening Flower bud (crop).jpg

The wild Roses are starting to appear - you smell them before you see them.

Ref: DF3_20170523_1758_020 Wild Rose Flower (crop 2).jpg

11 Jul 2017

Our first definite sighting this year of a Hobby on 21 May 2017
This dragonfly predator only appears just before we can hope to see our first Odonata (Dragonfly family).

Ref: DF3_20170521_1751_011-013 Hobby flying overhead 1-3 of 3 (approx montage).jpg

5 days after our first sighting of a Hobby the first Damselfly makes it's entrance - at least 4 of them fluttering delightfully in some sunshine at various places over our patch. They can not be breeding here because they require running water, but they must be breeding fairly close by to see immatures.

Ref: DF3_20170526_1440_113 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly immature male (crop).jpg

This Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly viewed from the rear looks worthy of the presence on 'Pandora' (the world of James Cameron's movie 'Avatar' if you didn't see it).

Ref: DF3_20170526_1440_109 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly immature male viewed from the rear (crop).jpg

10 Jul 2017

A second brood of Blue Tits is underway in the hole in the wall over the boiler (USA furnace) room. On one morning (20 May) a seemingly never ending stream of caterpillars were being delivered to the just audible screeching youngsters inside the wall.

Ref: DF3_20170520_0934_021 Blue Tit with large caterpillar about to enter nest hole.jpg

Here this Blue Tit stopped off for few second on the outside corner of the wall, gave us a suspicious look, and then carried on into the hidden nest hole with a caterpillar for one of the youngsters.

Ref: DF3_20170520_0938_063+067+070 Blue Tit flying to nest hole pausing on corner of wall 1+5+8 of 8 (impression montage).jpg

The Blue Tit parents frequently stopped for a moment on the TV Aerial before flying straight into the nest hole.

Ref: DF3_20170520_0938_078 Blue Tit with grub in beak perched on TV aerial 3m above nest hole.jpg

This Blue Tit made it straight into the (hidden) nest hole in the wall without a pause.

Ref: DF3_20170520_0950_197-199 Blue Tit flying with grub to nest hole 1-3 of 3 (accurate montage).jpg

09 Jul 2017

The female Blackbird was really enjoying a bath in the fresh rainwater collected in this huge pot-plant saucer. Her head is twisted to her right so the beak points upwards to the left.

Ref: DF3_20170518_1154_034 Blackbird female bathing in pot-plant saucer (crop).jpg

08 Jul 2017

In the drizzling rain mostly now stopped by the leaf canopy this Sparrowhawk is not looking his best, but we can see the bedraggled bird really well.

Ref: D36_20170517_2041_093_FB4 Sparrowhawk juvenile in rain (crop).jpg

One tends to think of Hawks & Owls as 'big' birds (an illusion generated by TV and film-makers always showing the most impressively large varieties), but here, compared to a Magpie at the same scale, you get a true size comparison.

Ref: D36_20170516_1618_068+20170517_2041_093_FB4 Magpie and Sparrowhawk juvenile in rain size comparison (montage).jpg

A normally elegant & magnificent pair of pheasants reduced to 2 bedraggled bundles of feathers. Poor things. Life outdoors has some major disadvantages!

Ref: D5C_20170517_1732_012+005 Pheasant pair after 10 hours of rain (montage).jpg

07 Jul 2017

Juvenile Rook (right) undoubtedly waiting for the adult to present it with some food.

Ref: E62_20170513_1855_095_FB5 Rook and juvenile.jpg

The juvenile Rook showing us his ever-empty gape.

Ref: E62_20170513_1901_096_FB5 Rook juvenile calling.jpg

Meanwhile at what is likely to be a now empty nest, this Rook repeatedly visited to tug furiously at twigs within it, working some free and then flying off with the booty to add to 'his' own.

Ref: D72_20170518_0710_026 Rook stealing twig from empty nest.jpg

06 Jul 2017

Here a Buzzard had reached a good height and spent the potential energy thus gained on a high speed dive. At about 7fps (0.142sec gaps) against wispy cloud we could accurately montage part of the flight, and knowing the birds typical length could work out it's speed at about 34 Miles per Hour (mph).
    Buzzard length = 20 inches = 97 pixels
    Gap between birds = 424 pixels = 87 inches
    87 inches / 0.142 sec = 609 inches/sec = 51 ft/sec = 34 mph

Ref: DF3_20170514_1105_055-060 Buzzard diving past clouds @ 7 fps 1-6 of 6 (accurate montage - about 34mph).jpg

05 Jul 2017

Brimstone Butterflies seem to have been on-the-wing for weeks. Here one is enjoying a Green Alkanet Flower.

Ref: DF3_20170511_1522_005 Brimstone Butterfly male on Green Alkanet flower.jpg

This pretty Clouded Silver Moth was flying along a path in the middle of the afternoon, landing in a patch of Cherry hedge where it stayed long enough to photograph it.

Ref: DF3_20170516_1452_028 Clouded Silver moth on cherry leaves.jpg

We last saw a Clouded Silver moth in May 2010 in a Moth-trap catch, so it must be on the wing both day and night (ID books don't state either way). The one in-flight image from 2010 was only moderately good and we didn't 'publish' it at the time, but now with a good reference image it is worth including because it shows how the antennae are tucked underneath the body in the moths resting position (as widely shown in ID book & WWW images) but are forward in flight.

Ref: DA1_20100521_1027_077_FT1 Clouded silver Moth (Lomographa temerata) in flight (crop).jpg

04 Jul 2017

Outside the living room window we repeated saw Wren(s) collecting desiccated leaves from within the hedge and flying off left with them.

Ref: DF1_20170512_0937_021 Wren collecting desiccated leaves from hedge by living room for nest by kitchen 2 of 9 (crop).jpg

Outside the living room window we repeated saw Wren(s) collecting desiccated leaves from within the hedge and flying off left with them. A little investigation led to the nest right outside the kitchen window about 10 metres to the left of this image, only a few centimetres from the top of the hedge but completely invisible from the top.

Ref: DF1_20170512_0937_023-025 Wren collects desiccated leaves from hedge by living room for nest by kitchen 4-6 of 9 (montage).jpg

A short pause in it's nest-building efforts allowed this little portrait of a Wren that on our PC screen is nearly twice life size.

Ref: DF1_20170512_0939_032 Wren collecting desiccated leaves from hedge by living room for nest by kitchen 7 of 9 (crop).jpg

03 Jul 2017

A Wet and beautiful male Mallard Duck (properly known as a Drake).
We always think it is a shame that by the Human summer holiday season the males have moulted into eclipse, and visitors to a 'local pond' don't get to see this glorious show.

Ref: E64_20170506_1730_096_FB2 Mallard Duck male.jpg

A female Mallard Duck leads the way - the male dutifully follows.

Ref: E62_20170516_1736_102_FB5 Mallard Duck pair (adjusted crop).jpg

02 Jul 2017

This male Brimstone butterfly was finding nectar at various flower, here at a White Dead-nettle - a naturally sting free variety. At this scale it not obvious, but the camouflage is remarkably good - the 'veins' on the insect blend wonderfully with those on the leaf. The butterfly's proboscis is gently bent through over a right angle to disappear into the flower.

Ref: DF3_20170510_1632_287 Brimstone Butterfly male feeding on White Dead-nettle (Lamium album) flower (crop).jpg

This Cranefly would have been very difficult to spot if we had not seen it land. The real surprise came later at the PC when we saw the bright blue eyes which we show in a 3 times scale insert. You might think it would be easy to ID but we have failed, all our books only showing the most common species and the WWW not actually naming the species.

Ref: DF3_20170510_1258_195 Crane-fly (unident) with bright blue eyes on Lodgepole pine (crop with enlarged eyes insert).jpg

01 Jul 2017

We are rather fond of our Lodgepole Pine trees, but you really have to be careful at this time of year not to brush past the developing cones and getting a huge lungful of their pollen. Here a slight tap produces a huge cloud.

Ref: DF3_20170510_1032_121+124+127 Pollen Cloud from Lodgepole Pine Cone 1+4+7 of 7 (montage).jpg



Return to image of the day

Newer page of archive          Older page of archive