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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 May 2018

A few Tree-sparrows were feeding on the blossom flowers, but the blossom hid most of the activity.
Is this Tree Sparrow adorning the Blossom, or the other way round?

Ref: DF3_20180419_1751_108 Tree Sparrow in Blackthorn blossom (crop).jpg

30 May 2018

We have several Cherry trees on our patch. These near the edge of the wooded area make a wonderful show of blossom.

Ref: DF3_20180419_1059_032 Cherry tree in blossom inside east boundary.jpg

Cherry Blossom detail.

Ref: DF3_20180419_1059_034 Cherry blossom detail.jpg

Cherry Blossom detail.

Ref: DF3_20180419_1608_050 Cherry tree in blossom inside east boundary (adjusted crop).jpg

29 May 2018

We first spotted this Bee-fly flying around the shrubs in a sunny patch. Fortunately it landed on this desiccated Oak leaf, possibly to warm itself in the sun, and we caught this view with the interesting shadows of the wings.

Ref: DF3_20180414_1532_118 Bee-fly perched on dead Oak leaf with shadows of wings (crop).jpg

Early Spring brings Bee-flies out to hover over anything, photographers included. They are not bees, but true flies that mimic bees. The long proboscis is not a sting, and the insect in completely harmless to humans.

Ref: DF3_20180419_1044_008 Bee-fly hovering (discontinuous) 4 of 4 (crop).jpg

The range of wing movement of the Bee-fly seems to be very small - this montage includes the full range of up and down movement.

Ref: DF3_20180419_1745_086+099+085 Bee-fly hovering (selected) 2+3+1 of 3 (montage).jpg

28 May 2018

Old concrete tracks have their uses - this strip of Violets is growing well in a decades old crack.

Ref: DF3_20180414_1525_107 Violets growing from crack in disused concrete track.jpg

There are primroses smiling up at us all over the site.

Ref: DF3_20180414_1531_115 Primrose clump.jpg

27 May 2018

There seem to be quite a lot of male Brimstone butterflies waking from their winter sleep. Rarely stopping in their search for a mate, they do occasionally need to stop for a re-fuel, here on a group of Forget-me-not flowers.

Ref: DF3_20180418_1052_106 Brimstone Butterfly male on Forget-me-not flower (crop).jpg

Under an Oak tree at the edge of the meadow is a carpet of Forget-me-nots of which this is one edge. Smaller self-seeded carpets are popping up all over the partly shaded area of the meadow.

Ref: DF3_20180420_1042_026 Forget-me-nots over a few square metres.jpg

26 May 2018

This male Reeve's Muntjac Deer walked quietly away from the humans arriving at the end of 'his' path. Just below the eye to our left you can see the scent gland bulging open.

Ref: DF3_20180413_1618_041 Muntjac Reeves Deer male viewed looking South along east inner path 1 of 3 (crop).jpg

Lost in the dark of the trail camera original were the antlers of this Roe Deer. We have seen quite a lot of 'larger than Muntjac' hoof slots in the endless mud, but this is our first 'sighting'. This species is bigger than Muntjac, has no facial mask, and no obvious tail.

Ref: SW2_20180414_2314_128_SC2 Roe Deer (crop IR).jpg

25 May 2018

We seem to be 'Rook-Ridden' this year, with all of the old nest sites refurbished or built again at the same site, plus several new nesting sites in the mature Black Poplars. This new site is in a medium sized Willow tree over the main pond.

Ref: DF3_20180414_0928_060 Rook nest in Willow tree by main pond (crop 2).jpg

On a day of heavy rain, this Rook picks up one of thousands of broken twigs lying all over the woodland floor.
The smudged image results from water and mud splashed onto the glass protecting the camera by a strong wind, despite being protected by a 20cm overhanging slate.

Ref: E64_20180412_1358_063_FB2 Rook picking up twig from ground after rain.jpg

Next morning this Rook has obtained a twig (in the beak) to add to the nest.

Ref: DF3_20180415_0642_141 Rook nest in Willow tree by main pond - with twig in beak (crop).jpg

24 May 2018

All three of our 'regular' owls making landing on the meadow post.
The sizes of the Owl images are all at the same scale.

Ref: D01_20180417_0430_005+0059_002+20180415_2031_005_FB6 Tawny Owl + barn Owl + Little Owl landings at same scale (montage).jpg

Landing accomplished, the restless Little Owl did not stay, but the larger Owls spent several minutes in a quiet search for some imprudent rodent.

Ref: D01_20180417_0432_008+0100_003_FB6 Barn Owl 2 minute visit to meadow post 2 of 3 (montage).jpg

23 May 2018

A Male Reeve's Muntjac Deer rests quietly on the island of the main pond.

Ref: DF3_20180412_1701_009 Muntjac Reeves Deer male resting on main pond island.jpg

This 28 image sequence is of a Reeve's Muntjac Deer contentedly feeding at the back of the pond and then wandering over the Iris roots to rest on the Island of the pond.

Ref: D5C_20180412_1640_003-on Muntjac Reeves Deer male browsing over main pond & island over 20mins 01-28 of 28 (anim).gif

22 May 2018

This corvid lands with a thump next to the distracted Wood Pigeon.

Ref: E60_20180410_1552_015_FB3 Wood Pigeon alarmed by Corvid landing on bird table.jpg

3 minutes later we have just this one lovely Wood Pigeon showing us the underside of it's wings.

Ref: E60_20180410_1555_017_FB3 Wood Pigeon on bird table with under-wing detail.jpg

21 May 2018

A male Reeve's Muntjac Deer spent a quarter of an hour resting and chewing the cud on the island of the main pond, easily reached by stepping on the Iris roots

Ref: DF3_20180410_1235_013 Muntjac Reeves Deer male chewing cud and resting on Main pond island 09 of 11 (crop).jpg

A male Reeve's Muntjac Deer spent a quarter of an hour resting and chewing the cud on the island of the main pond. Finally disturbed by hearing the crunch of shoes on gravel at the front of the house, he made a quiet withdrawal into the undergrowth.

Ref: D5C_20180410_1235_040-1247_056 Muntjac Reeves Deer male chewing cud and resting on Main pond island 02-05 of 11 (montage).jpg

A surprise for us - we have 2 male Reeve's Muntjac Deer.
These two pics taken 4 hours apart show on the left a Deer with his little antlers (made of real bone) visible above the ears, whilst the male on the right still has his antlers growing under skin (known by the lovely term 'In Velvet') to the left of his ears.
Muntjac Deer don't have a 'breeding season' - their Fawns can be born throughout the year, so the cycle of Antler growing is not synchronised for a 'Rut'.

Ref: BU2_20180408_0925_027+1318_047_SC7 2 Muntjac Reeves Deer male visits left=bone antlers right=velvet (detail montage).jpg

20 May 2018

"Where's that flea?"

Ref: E64_20180407_1559_087_FB2 Grey Squirrel grooming.jpg

19 May 2018

The Tawny Owl visits the perch at the kitchen window. The wings are partly folded as the Owl lands.

Ref: E60_20180406_2141_026_FB3 Tawny Owl landing.jpg

A Midnight Tawny Owl stays on the Meadow Post for a few minutes. The wings are partly folded as the Owl lands.

Ref: D01_20180409_0005_001+007_004_FB6 Tawny Owl 4 minute visit 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

18 May 2018

A new pair of Rooks suddenly started a brand new nest a few metres from an established one. It is only clearly visible from one vantage point you see here. We caught the start with not many twigs in place, but only a day later it was quite developed. The third caught one of the builders 'on site' and by only the forth day it looked ready for 'interior decoration' - lining with leaves.

Ref: DF3_20180410_1558_053-20180411_1032_001 Rook nest building 08Apr2018 daily to 11Apr2018 (montage).jpg

6 days later in high winds (not quite a 'storm' but a definite 'branch swayer') the nest tumbled out of the tree and we found it on the concrete track, here rolled over to see into the 'cup'. It didn't disintegrate so was nicely woven together - just not adequately anchored to the tree. Next day the site in the tree was still vacant, but another morning forward we were amazed to see a partially built replacement at the same site. Another 24 hours on at least twice as many sticks have been woven in. We hope what might be a 'starter-home' gets re-built better at the second try.

Ref: DF3_20180417_1621_040+18_1047_103+19_0732_160+20_0742_047 Rook nest started 08apr2018 fallen & rebuilt (montage 4 days).jpg

The most developed Rooks nest near the house is now clearly being incubated. Here for just a minute the birds 'canoodled' on an adjacent branch before one went back to settle on the nest.

Ref: DF3_20180408_0823_039 Rook nest and Rook pair in Black Poplar tree nearest house - affection at nest changeover.jpg

17 May 2018

We first saw a Brimstone Butterfly on 26 March, but this is our first pic of one (a male) feasting on one of many Primroses adorning the front garden.

Ref: DF3_20180405_1318_097 Brimstone Butterfly (1st image of 2018).jpg

16 May 2018

This Buzzard glides by slowly turning left but obviously finding something to it's right of intense interest, bending it's neck to watch.

Ref: DF3_20180405_1117_051+055+059+062 Buzzard glide to right turning head left 1-4 of 4 (close spaced montage over 2 secs).jpg

15 May 2018

The local Tawny Owl visits the meadow post towards the camera downwind of the post.

Ref: D01_20180406_2131_001_FB6 Tawny Owl 6 minute visit 1 of 4 (crop).jpg

Next night the camera is upwind of the post, so this Barn Owl arrives with back to camera. We rarely see Barn Owls move their feet after landing, but their wonderful necks and body can twist to let this one look back at the camera

Ref: D01_20180407_2222_001+2224_004+2223_003_FB6 Barn owl 6 minute visit 1+3+2 of 3 (montage).jpg

14 May 2018

Wet and blustery weather seems to have brought in several male pheasants to find some cover on our patch.

Ref: E63_20180329_1448_027_FB1 Pheasant male with tail vertical.jpg

Wet and blustery weather seems to have brought in several male pheasants to find some cover on our patch.

Ref: E63_20180401_1355_204_FB1 Pheasant male.jpg

"Penny plain, Tuppence coloured"
Wet and blustery weather seems to have brought in several male pheasants to find some cover on our patch. Corvids and Pheasants mostly seem to tolerate each other as here.

Ref: E63_20180402_1715_050_FB1 Magpie and Pheasant male sharing site.jpg

After the rain, a male Pheasant inspects the waterlogged ground. Note the reflection of the red Wattles in the water at the bottom of the frame

Ref: E62_20180330_1817_076_FB5 Pheasant male at waterlogged site in rain.jpg

13 May 2018

Walking in the quiet of early morning of Easter Sunday this Road-kill Rabbit was lying on the main road still reasonably intact. A bucket and spade transported it to the meadow camera site where it lay mostly untouched for the rest of that day. Then a magpie (top image) and Carrion Crows all pecked off a bit, before the arrival of 'our' young Fox who it seems was strong enough to drag it off to we-know-not-where a couple of hours before dawn.

Ref: E62_20180402_1412_042+20180403_0420_072+0437_073_FB5 Magpie eating road-kill Rabbit before Fox takes it overnight (montage).jpg

12 May 2018

A wet female Blackbird has pulled a wet Earthworm out of the wet mud!

Ref: E63_20180330_1321_060_FB1 Blackbird female with earthworm in beak.jpg

11 May 2018

We haven't seen any very light coloured Buzzard for at least a year. Here it is being made unwelcome, as usual, by one of the local Rooks.

Ref: DF3_20180403_1243_075 Buzzard with light plumage harassed by Rook.jpg

A closer view of the light coloured Buzzard shows the wings in a shorter and broader configuration, probably better for gliding rather than 'shaking off' the Rook.

Ref: DF3_20180403_1243_081 Buzzard with light plumage in flight (crop).jpg

10 May 2018

The sky is BIG - it is surprising how rarely things cross each other, so this line-of-site crossing was too much to resist.
This montage is genuine, but the paths of the plane and Buzzard are skewed to make the action clearer. Photographed at about 7fps.

Ref: DF3_20180401_1209_036-040 Aeroplane G-RATE and Buzzard crossing in flight 1-5 of 5 (impression montage).jpg

09 May 2018

A few Spring flowers the Squirrels haven't eaten yet include clumps of Primroses.

Ref: DF3_20180403_1301_129 Primrose clump near garage.jpg

One of thousands of Blackthorn flowers starting to emerge in patches in the hundreds of metres of our hedges around us.

Ref: DF3_20180403_1308_132 Blackthorn single opening flower.jpg

The Lombardy Poplar Trees planted along the farm road a few years ago have produced Catkins for the first time this year.

Ref: DF3_20180330_0928_009 Lombardy Poplar (along Farm Road) first year with Catkins.jpg

08 May 2018

After a couple of weeks of absence the Tawny owl visited for 7 minutes before diving down to the short grass on the right side of the post.
Photographing a bird leaving like this is just luck - beam breaks react much more slowly to the beam returning than being broken - here the next timed picture just happened to occur at the right moment.

Ref: D01_20180403_2139_005-2145_013_FB6 Tawny Owl 7 minute visit including departure diving down 1+2+4+5 of 5 (montage).jpg

07 May 2018

A small flock of at least 6 Tree Sparrows continue to wander around the plot. Here a couple of them lined up as if for a photo!

Ref: E62_20180326_1829_087_FB5 2 Tree Sparrows side by side (crop).jpg

A small flock of at least 6 Tree Sparrows continue to wander around the plot.

Ref: E62_20180327_1853_125_FB5 6 Tree Sparrows feeding together.jpg

3 of 'our' Tree Sparrows (genuine single frame) each with a little seed in the beak.

Ref: E62_20180403_1706_016_FB5 3 Tree Sparrows each with seed in beak.jpg

06 May 2018

A true 'togetherness' moment for this pair of Mallard ducks sharing the supper table.

Ref: E62_20180326_1807_080_FB5 Mallard Duck pair feeding together (crop 1).jpg

05 May 2018

A Dunnock sings his territorial song from this hedge-top.

Ref: DF3_20180326_1214_028-030 Dunnock singing in hedge-top 1-3 of 3 (montage).jpg

A small flock of at least 6 Tree Sparrows wander around the plot, seen mainly at this site in the meadow and occasionally at bird tables. Here a male Blackbird watches them.

Ref: E62_20180323_1453_050_FB5 6 Tree Sparrows + Blackbird male.jpg

04 May 2018

The first decently warm day brought out the Bumble Bees. We seem to have a colony of this species recently arrived in the UK.

Ref: DF3_20180326_1205_005 Buff-tailed Bumble Bee on white and purple crocuses.jpg

The first decently warm day brought out the Bumble Bees. We seem to have a colony of this species recently arrived in the UK.

Ref: DF3_20180326_1207_014 Buff-tailed Bumble Bee on Grape Hyacinth.jpg

03 May 2018

Spring has Sprung - the Primroses are flowering

Ref: DF3_20180323_0956_084 Primrose clump.jpg

In odd corners of the paths Celandines smile up at us.

Ref: DF3_20180326_1208_018 Celandine flowers (crop).jpg

This is one of the tiny daisies that some people seem to think 'spoil' their pristine grass. This little flower was the only one we could find at the edge of the farmers crop.

Ref: DF3_20180326_1218_031 Daisy Flower on farm crop margin.jpg

02 May 2018

Now the nests are built, its all down to comfort and maintenance. Here a Rook collects and carries away a large beakful of last years leaves.

Ref: DF1_20180327_1140_010+021 Rook collecting bedding on Main Pond island and flying off with it 3+6 of 6 (montage upwards).jpg

The Blackbird's nest is much smaller than a Rooks, and needs 'lighter' lining. Here the Blackbird spent several minutes collecting an ever increasing amount of dead grass before, to our surprise, not flying off with it, but just walking through the bottom of the nearby hedge.

Ref: DF1_20180328_1759_008+020+025+1801_068 Blackbird female collecting bedding 1+3+5+7 of 8 (montage).jpg

A head-on view the beakful forming a somewhat untidy but otherwise impressive 'handlebar moustache'

Ref: DF1_20180328_1800_033 Blackbird female collecting bedding 6 of 8 (crop).jpg

01 May 2018

A lovely Song Thrush.
We have found at least one of the 'Anvils' a small paving slab under an evergreen that not used for a couple of years. A week later, as we finalise this, all the snail shells have gone! We understand from a BBC documentary about eggs that some Tits and other birds crunch up snail shells in their Gizzards to absorb the Calcium to make their egg shells. We guess that one or more birds found this already smashed up resource.
A discussion on the subject can be found at George Pilkington's site at

Ref: E62_20180324_0608_074_FB5 Song Thrush.jpg



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