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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

30 Jun 2019

This is the detail of the head and thorax of a male Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly.

Ref: DF5_20190526_1014_086 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly male (head and shadow detail crop).jpg

Beautiful Demoiselle Damselflies thoraxes are covered in fine hairs, but they don't show well in most photos. Here backlighting makes them more obvious.

Ref: DF5_20190526_1021_115 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly male with backlighting highlighting body hairs (crop with 2x insert).jpg

Finally female Beautiful Demoiselle on the left and male on the right.
NOT EXACT SCALE - Don't read anything into the slightly different sizes.

Ref: DF5_20190527_1017_020+1010_015 Beautiful Demoiselle female (left) and male (right) (montage).jpg

29 Jun 2019

The site is wonderfully awash with Beautiful Demoiselle Damselflies. 'Beautiful' is part of the common name, as well as being a good description. About 20 individuals flutter about as you pass a sheltered warm patch.
The females bodies are iridescent and vary in colour from green to gold according to the lighting. Females also have the white dot (pseudo-pterostigma) near the upper tip of all 4 wings, though it is sometimes hard to see.

Ref: DF5_20190524_1221_166 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly female.jpg

The male Beautiful Demoiselle Damselflies have intense blue bodies, and no white dot on the tip of the wings.

Ref: DF5_20190525_1229_006 Beautiful Demoiselle Damselfly male.jpg

28 Jun 2019

A rather magnificent little Beetle on a folded over Iris leaf.

Ref: DF5_20190524_1056_064 Rustic Sailor Beetle (Cantharis rustica) on Flag Iris leaf.jpg

A rather magnificent Red Soldier Beetle gives us a couple of different views.

Ref: DF5_20190527_1004_009+008 Red Soldier Beetle (prob Rhagonycha fulva) (montage).jpg

27 Jun 2019

We have an in-house joke that 3 twigs is enough for a Pigeon nest.
Here a Wood Pigeon is obviously not convinced by our counting.

Ref: DF5_20190523_1004_006+007+009 Wood Pigeon with stick in beak flies from concrete power post 1+2+4 of 4 (montage).jpg

Here is a Rook youngster demanding food from the hard-pressed parent.

Ref: E62_20190523_1802_037_FB5 Rook juvenile begging from adult.jpg

26 Jun 2019

The 10m length of Green Alkanet (covered in BLUE flowers) are now attracting Honey Bees. Here is one with proboscis deep in a flower with the Pollen Baskets just about full enough to take the bounty back to the hive - wherever that may be.

Ref: DF5_20190522_1556_197 Honey Bee with Pollen Baskets (corbicula) filled on Green Alkanet flower (crop).jpg

We have seen lots 'Carpet Moths' here over the years, but it seems to be the first time we have seen this 'Wood Carpet Moth'.

Ref: DF5_20190521_1033_045 Wood Carpet Moth (Epirrhoe rivata) on Sweetheart (first sighting here) (crop).jpg

25 Jun 2019

Hawthorn Blossom is forming patches of white hedge all over the area.

Ref: DF5_20190521_0816_012 Hawthorn Flowers with Hover-fly.jpg

On the Hawthorn Flowers we spotted this Hover-fly which promptly departed before we could get some more detailed pics of it. We seem to be seeing a number of new-to-us species of Hoverfly this Spring. This seems to be Syrphus Ribesii.

Ref: DF5_20190521_0816_012 Hover-fly probably Syrphus Ribesii female on Hawthorn Flowers (detail crop).jpg

Another new Hover-fly for us, perched on a leaf. A hover-fly specialist has corrected our original ID, which we agreed with once we had studied ours and two apparently reliable reference pics in detail.

Ref: DF5_20190521_1015_029 Hover-fly probably Dasysyrphus venustus (previously thought to be Scaeva pyrastri).jpg

24 Jun 2019

A pair of Red-legged partridges were resting on the edge of the concrete track opposite the front of the house. Here is one of them (montaged) as it got up to walk down to the track.

Ref: DF2_20190521_1231_001+006 Red-legged Partridge preparing to walk away to right (montage).jpg

23 Jun 2019

We couldn't buy Hornbeam trees for our initial planting, but were gifted some saplings which have been quietly growing in the depth of the wood, and have started making these delightful seed clusters.

Ref: DF5_20190519_1334_082 Hornbeam seed cluster (first sighting here).jpg

22 Jun 2019

Our first Odonata (Dragonfly family) of the year was this delightful male 'Beautiful Demoiselle'. This is a big insect for the UK - length about 50mm (2 inches) and in flight has a characteristic slow fluttering wing beat.

Ref: df5_20190522_1340_147 beautiful demoiselle male (first of 2019) (crop).jpg

We tend to mostly notice the male Orange Tip Butterflies, so catching this female (no orange!) feeding on a ground ivy flower was worth a pic.

Ref: DF5_20190519_1328_066 Orange-tip Butterfly female feeding on Ground Ivy flower.jpg

This overwintered Comma Butterfly has had a few pecks on the edge of the wings (symmetrically so the wings were closed at the time). This quite large butterfly then 'vanished' when finally closing it's wings - that irregular edge disguises the insect remarkably well.

Ref: DF5_20190521_1459_096+1500_102 Comma Butterfly with wings closed camouflaged as dead leaf 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

21 Jun 2019

We are not very good at spider ID's but are fairly sure that this one scurrying over the disused concrete track (cracks full of lovely wildlife friendly weeds!) is called Trochosa ruricola
We understand that no British Spiders are dangerous to humans.

Ref: DF5_20190521_1301_073 Spider (probably Trochosa ruricola) on ground (crop).jpg

In the farm crop margin a spider has spun this web on the ground, now soaked with overnight rain.

Ref: DF5_20190519_0916_052 Spider web in grass wet with dew.jpg

20 Jun 2019

The male Blackbird is collecting breakfast for his (and Mrs.) nestful of screaming youngsters.

Ref: E63_20190518_0545_166_FB1 Blackbird male with worm in beak.jpg

Blue Tits are actively breeding in every suitable nest box we have installed. This scruffy individual is perched high in a Dogwood bush for a much needed preen in the sunshine. We couldn't resist the 'ball' effect on the right.

Ref: DF5_20190521_1440_091+093 Blue Tit preening on Dogwood branch 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

19 Jun 2019

A male Chaffinch showing off his still glorious colours.

Ref: DF5_20190514_0803_192 Chaffinch male on dead branch of Pear Tree.jpg

Whilst Chaffinches have bred here for the last 30 years, Yellowhammers came for a couple of years, disappeared for some more, and this year have returned with several 'couples' in the area.

Ref: E63_20190518_1919_207_FB1 Yellowhammer male on stone.jpg

18 Jun 2019

From 20 frames at this site taken over 4 days, we have assembled this little fun montage, actually mostly accurately placed.

Ref: E63_20190510_0054_140-20190513_0232_388_FB1 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) over 4 nights (montage).jpg

17 Jun 2019

Here are a pair of Brimstone butterflies indulging in their aerial ballet. This set of 4 exposures of the rising pair are at about 150mS intervals. Here the male is always below, with the yellow upper wing that has been moderately bird pecked along the edges.
Sorry about the ugly orange of the traffic barrier, but it helped the camera find and keep on focus for the half second of this sequence.

Ref: DF5_20190514_1244_241+242+244+246 Brimstone Butterfly male and female courting 1+2+4+6 of 6 (approx montage).jpg

Orange-tip butterflies often feed on Garlic Mustard flowers - the same plants on which the females lay their eggs, but for 'fuelling' purposes Orange-tip Butterflies will use any suitable source of nectar - here the flower of the 'dreaded' Ground Ivy.

Ref: DF5_20190514_1734_021 Orange-tip Butterfly male feeding on Ground Ivy flower.jpg

16 Jun 2019

A male Chaffinch collecting live food for the nestlings

Ref: DF5_20190512_0659_062 Chaffinch male in young Lombardy Poplar tree with 2 or more grubs in beak.jpg

The Rooks breeding is already well advanced, and they are collecting live food for the youngsters high in the trees above us.

Ref: DF5_20190510_1226_075 Rock with invertibrate pulled picked out of soil.jpg

15 Jun 2019

On the night that we put out the moth trap only 10 metres from this pole (with a powerful 125 watt mercury vapour lamp) the Little Owl spent a couple of minutes on the pole top. Little Owls also hunt in daylight, so the light probably didn't bother the Little Owl at all.

Ref: D01_20190511_2127_027+2126_023+025_FB6 Little Owl 2 minute visit to meadow post 3+1+2 of 3 (montage).jpg

14 Jun 2019

The Lodgepole pine trees every year make a HUGE amount of Pollen that the slightest movement or puff of wind releases clouds of.

Ref: DF5_20190511_1355_052 Pollen falling from Lodgepole Pine catkins (crop 1).jpg

13 Jun 2019

We often comment on male Mallard Duck 'guarding' feeding females intending a slight air of irony - guarding usually means quacking a warning as he flies off in panic. But here the male on the bank guarding the duck in the water is threatening the Grey Squirrel a couple of metres away, and the Grey Squirrel veers away.
We need to be more respectful of the males efforts in future!

Ref: BU5_20190511_1006_601_SC1 Mallard Duck male guarding female sees off Grey Squirrel 1 of 2 (crop).jpg

The female Mallard Duck was on the front bank of the main pond, sitting on a heap of Iris Roots racked from the pond The bird didn't like the appearance of a human at the window, and decided to depart.
No - she is NOT sitting on a nest by this pond.

Ref: DF4_20190511_1220_002+003+007 Mallard Duck female taking off from pile of dried Lily roots 1+2+4 of 4 (montage).jpg

Here is a detail of the female Mallard Duck in flight.
The splash of blue is her partly obscured speculum.

Ref: DF4_20190511_1220_007 Mallard Duck female taking off from pile of dried Lily roots 4 of 4 (crop).jpg

12 Jun 2019


Ref: D01_20190511_0552_169_FB6 Wood Pigeon about to land on meadow post.jpg

Wood Pigeons pairs are so affectionate.

Ref: E60_20190508_1743_069_FB3 Wood Pigeon pair perched together.jpg

The Wood Pigeon starts to land on the kitchen perch just as the Grey Squirrel emerges from underneath the bird table. Quite a shock for the Pigeon we imagine.

Ref: E60_20190506_1748_012_FB3 Wood Pigeon and Grey Squirrel arrive simultaneously at the bird table.jpg

11 Jun 2019

This Tortoiseshell Butterfly has lost some of it's scales, but has mostly avoided the birds. After stoking up on this Dandelion it will continue the search for a mate.

Ref: DF5_20190510_1559_096 Tortoiseshell Butterfly overwintered and faded feeding on Dandelion (crop).jpg

Along the crop margins the Dandelion are mostly now 'clocks'.

Ref: DF5_20190510_1601_104 Hedge + Margin + Crop along road to north Seq (detail) (orig & final).jpg

10 Jun 2019

The male Yellowhammer that frequents the bend in the Farm road is here caught selecting a small oval seed from the bird seed mix we sprinkle about.

Ref: DF5_20190506_0940_004 Yellowhammer male eating seeds on concrete track.jpg

A few days on, we are lucky to get male and female Yellowhammers in the same frame and both reasonably in focus.

Ref: E62_20190513_0646_284_FB5 2 Yellowhammers.jpg

A montage in celebration, over 30 hours, of the male Yellowhammer at the hedge bottom.

Ref: E63_20190514_0602_058-20190515_1055_138_FB1 Yellowhammer male visits to hedge bottom over 30 hours (accurate montage).jpg

09 Jun 2019

At the kitchen window bird table the automatic camera catches this Great Tit stopping by with a beakful of grubs destined for a nest somewhere.

Ref: E60_20190506_1821_018_FB3 Great Tit with insect in beak.jpg

Next day we spot a bird leaving one of the new Woodcrete nestboxes, and waiting for the next exit is rewarded by this image of a Great Tit flying off in the direction of the kitchen window some 30m away. So youngsters being fed already.

Ref: DF5_20190507_1744_082 Great Tit flying from Woodcrete Nestbox 3 of 4 (crop).jpg

08 Jun 2019

A Chance view of the pond on the other side of the brook catches this (what appeared to be) solitary Canada Goose gliding across the pond, complete with reflection and framed by the nearer trees we were peering through.

Ref: DF5_20190505_0830_001 Canada Goose on pond north of brook.jpg

07 Jun 2019

We don't know what is going on between these two Foxes, but we think that it is more 'play' than fight

Ref: E63_20190504_2121_165_FB1 2 Foxes sparring (crop 1).jpg

06 Jun 2019

Fruit tree blossom is spread around the site.
We would love to add 'Apple', 'Pear', 'Plum' or whatever, but the trees we were allowed to transplant were mostly unidentified and we don't remember which is which!

Ref: DF5_20190504_1225_005 Fruit tree blossom.jpg

Fruit tree blossom is spread around the site.
We would love to add 'Apple', 'Pear', 'Plum' or whatever, but the trees we were allowed to transplant were mostly unidentified and we don't remember which is which!

Ref: DF5_20190504_1227_023 Fruit tree blossom.jpg

05 Jun 2019

Half an hour after the female Roe Deer visited the mound, a glance over the southern hedge showed her walking through the Wheat Crop along one of the sprayer tractor ruts. She ambled down the rut but somehow detected the distant presence of a human, and decided to depart.

Ref: DF5_20190505_1613_039+043+044+046 Roe Deer female walking down tractor rut spots photographer 1-4 of 4 (montage).jpg

The female Roe Deer could have 'escaped' through a hedge further away, but instead made a speedy but un-panicked progress along this hedge.

Ref: DF5_20190505_1614_127+129+131+134 Roe Deer female leaping along hedge @7fps 01+03+05+08 of 21 (acc montage skipping frames).jpg

At one point the female Roe Deer made this graceful leap. At 7 fps the images would overlap. We toyed with 'stretching' the montage, but decided to keep the dimensional accuracy by skipping frames. This is the even numbered frames ...

Ref: DF5_20190505_1614_134+136+138 Roe Deer female leaping along hedge @7fps 8+10+12 of 21 (accurate montage alternate frames).jpg

... while this fills in the gaps with the odd numbered frames.

Ref: DF5_20190505_1614_135+137 Roe Deer female leaping along hedge @7fps 009+011 of 21 (accurate montage alternate frames).jpg

04 Jun 2019

The male Roe Deer spent about 5 hours overnight on our patch. This is the best picture of the Antlers, in Infra Red, at 2.30 a.m. at the edge of the Round Pond.

Ref: BU5_20190504_0237_392_SC1 Roe Deer male visits over 5 hours after midnight 2 of 9 (crop).jpg

Monarch of the Glen?
The male Roe Deer was still on the site 5 hours later after sun-up, here back at the edge of Round Pond, possibly for a drink.

Ref: BU5_20190504_0722_446_SC1 Roe Deer male visits over 5 hours after midnight 8 of 9 (crop 2).jpg

The day after we saw the male Roe Deer tis female visited, here staring at the camera. Did she hear a sound from the camera that we have never detected?

Ref: BU2_20190505_1542_681_SC7 Roe Deer female visit in mid-afternoon 3 of 3 (crop).jpg

03 Jun 2019

Roe Deer (which we see only occasionally) are MUCH bigger than our regular Reeve's Muntjac Deer, This little identical scale montage shows you the difference, Muntjac on the left.

Ref: BU5_20190503_0155_232+20190504_0237_391_SC1 Muntjac Reeves Deer male (left) + Roe Deer male (montage at same scale).jpg

The Reeve's Muntjac deer Fawn is now perhaps 2/3rd the height of Mum. It is weaned but is often seen with Mum.

Ref: BU5_20190507_2147_542+2149_546+547_SC1 Muntjac Reeves Deer Fawn and Mother 2-4 of 4 (montage).jpg

02 Jun 2019

A moment of panic upon spotting 'our' male pheasant lying on his side in the dry soil of the salad bed. But he is just having a sunbath, soon up and about again, clucking and displaying.

Ref: DF5_20190502_1132_009 Pheasant male lying on his side and sunbathing in loose dry soil.jpg

As we walk along the farm track, the male Pheasant follows us for 50m, probably hoping that some corn would magically appear. We put some down, we looked around for the Pheasant, but he had given up the wait and disappeared through the hedge.

Ref: DF5_20190505_1218_015 Pheasant male keeping pace with us along grass outside south boundary.jpg

01 Jun 2019

A view to the North of the leafing trees at the brook - a glorious vivid green of Field Maple in it's first flush.

Ref: DF5_20190430_0958_048 Field Maple trees at Brook edge shining Spring Green (orig & final).jpg

A few days later a walk down to the brook allowed us to capture this detail of the emerging Field Maple leaves and flowers.

Ref: DF5_20190505_0833_008 Field Maple leaf and flower detail.jpg



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