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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 May 2020

After a few weeks of absence and then a few fleeting glimpses, hopefully while incubating eggs, the local female Kestrel makes a much longer visit to the meadow post.

Ref: D01_20200505_1548_101+102+1553_112+155_115_FB6 Kestrel female 10+ minute visit to meadow post 1+2+4+6 of 8 (montage).jpg

30 May 2020

The Rooks seem mostly to have finished making the new generation. Here we have 2 pairs of Rooks, juvenile on the left in each case.

Ref: D73_20200507_0710_096 2 Rook juveniles (left in each pair) + 2 adults (crop 2).jpg

But just one pair of Rooks seem to be building a new nest or doing a renovation. Here one bird (probably the male) has picked up a twig well over twice his own length. The stick starts above where he is holding it and ends almost at the bottom of this pic. He spent several minutes trying various way to get it into the nest, but just couldn't.

Ref: D73_20200507_0707_021 Rook at nest failing to manoeuver long twig so flies off and returns with it 01 of 22 (crop).jpg

He finally just took off with it, and expected him to drop it as 'too big'. But instead he made a wide circle and flew back to the nesting tree with it still in his beak.

Ref: D73_20200507_0708_070-073 Rook at nest failing to manoeuver long twig flies off & returns with it 06-09 of 22 (acc montage).jpg

Finally he landed well above his nest and his calling mate, and quickly worked his way down onto the nest with his prize.

Ref: D73_20200507_0708_094 Rook at nest failing to manoeuver long twig so flies off and returns with it 22 of 22 (crop).jpg

29 May 2020

This has been an unusually plentiful year for Green Veined White Butterflies around our patch. This one is feeding from an also plentiful Garlic Mustard flower.

Ref: D73_20200504_1508_012 Green-veined White Butterfly feeding on Garlic Mustard flower.jpg

Next afternoon this Green Veined White butterfly perches on a Garlic Mustard leaf. Not trying to feed, the Proboscis is neatly rolled.

Ref: DF3_20200505_1333_013 Green-veined White Butterfly perched on Garlic Mustard leaf.jpg

28 May 2020

After entering the site 13 minutes before the female Roe Deer appears at the front of Round Pond. The huge ears look wonderful.

Ref: BU5_20200504_0436_365_SC1 Roe Deer female (IR).jpg

2 nights later the male Roe Deer crosses the concrete track showing off his antlers and proving an unusually good view of his hooves.

Ref: BU3_20200506_2136_360_SC6 Roe Deer male on access track (IR).jpg

Hours later, in morning sunshine, the female of the much smaller Reeve's Muntjac Deer ambles across the concrete track into the adjacent crop field to the left.

Ref: BU3_20200504_1020_256+257_SC6 Muntjac Deer female walking across access track 1+2 of 2 (accurate montage).jpg

27 May 2020

This Red-headed Cardinal Beetle was glowing in the sunshine on the end of some sort of dried up stem.

Ref: DF3_20200503_1612_104 Red-headed Cardinal Beetle.jpg

26 May 2020

The local female Kestrel, not seen for weeks, flashes by and lands on one of the apple trees. She proceeded to perch quietly, repeatedly opening her gape and closing it again repeatedly for a few minutes - most likely something to do with regurgitating a pellet, but we never saw one.

Ref: DF3_20200501_1746_021+030+031+034 Kestrel female repeatedly opening beak wide while perched 1-4 of 4 (montage).jpg

"I see you, but you seem mostly Harmless."
Shameful mash-up of quotes from Avatar and The Hitch-hikers Guide to the Galaxy.

Ref: DF3_20200501_1755_079 Kestrel female inspecting cameraman (crop 1).jpg

I've already said I can see you.

Ref: DF3_20200501_1755_079 Kestrel female inspecting cameraman (crop 2).jpg

She finally decided to fly to another perch, still quite close but in a conifer where she is obscured. As many birds do just before take-off, she evacuates her bowels - why carry unnecessary weight.

Ref: DF3_20200501_1757_095-097+099+100 Kestrel female defecating before launching 1-3+5+6 of 6 (montage @7fps).jpg

25 May 2020

A mid-afternoon fox enters the area at the south west corner, spends 10 minutes on the prowl, and exits through the east passage.
What gets a Fox out in the middle of the day? Most probably hungry youngsters!

Ref: BU6_20200427_1452_022_SC2+BU4_20200427_1501_025 Fox entering SW corner & leaving East 10 mins later 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

We see lots of Foxes moving in and out of the site, but they do seem to avoid the high resolution & flash cameras, so nice to see this one.

Ref: E62_20200502_0207_124_FB5 Fox.jpg

This fox is near the edge of the duck-shaped pond, we think sniffing the air in search of a meal. If there is a duck nest on the island (right) the Fox will have to decide whether the eggs are worth a cold swim.

Ref: BU8_20200505_0354_023 Fox scenting air at Duck Pond.jpg

24 May 2020

About time - a piece of FRESH juicy carrot rather than the stale ends.

Ref: E62_20200426_0820_195_FB5 Grey Squirrel eating end of fresh carrot.jpg

Something out of frame top and right seems to have really spooked this Squirrel.

Ref: E62_20200504_1817_052_FB5 Grey Squirrel looking up extremely stressed.jpg

Apple now, STRAWBERRY to come!

Ref: E64_20200506_1755_100_FB2 Grey Squirrel female eating fruit peel.jpg

23 May 2020

A piece of 'Timber' for nest improvements?

Ref: E63_20200426_0758_190_FB1 Wood Pigeon with twig in beak.jpg

This Wood Pigeon works along his tail feathers, 'combing' them out. You can just see the eye's tiny inverted tear drop Iris shape in the bright light.

Ref: D01_20200501_1047_177_FB6 Wood Pigeon preening on meadow post.jpg

22 May 2020

Outside the living room window over breakfast, this Wren spent a minute or two singing his heart out.
Should it matter the sequence is Upper Left, Lower Left, Upper Middle, Lower Middle etc.

Ref: DF5_20200426_0646_012-048 Wren singing from sloping twig 02+03+05+06+09+12 of 13 (montage - TL+BL+ML etc).jpg

21 May 2020

This Wood Pigeon takes off from the post with rather more verve than usual. Normally they sort of fall off downwards and catch the fall with their wings.

Ref: D01_20200425_1710_092+1712_094_FB6 Wood Pigeon takes off from Meadow Post 1+2 of 2 (accurate montage).jpg

This Hover-fly was hovering about a metre away, holding position really accurately, providing the chance of this in-flight portrait.

Ref: DF3_20200426_1752_264 Hover-fly hovering.jpg

20 May 2020

A male Roe Deer spent 7 minutes traversing our patch.

Ref: BU6_20200429_2206_432_SC2+BU4_20200429_2204_069 Roe Deer male wandering over site for 7 minutes 4+5 of 5 (montage).jpg

The one that got away - none of our hi-resolution flash cameras are set up to photograph creatures that are this tall.

Ref: E64_20200429_2202_084_FB2 Roe Deer male wandering over site for 7 minutes 2 of 5 (orig & final).jpg

19 May 2020

First sighting here this year of any sort of Wagtail. This one is a Pied Wagtail spending just a few seconds on an 11kV cable

Ref: D73_20200427_1229_055-1230_061 Pied Wagtail on 11kv cable 1-5 of 5 (montage).jpg

The same Pied Wagtail started hunting along the edge of the disused concrete track, suddenly leaping forward and backing off with a substantial caterpillar in it's beak

Ref: D73_20200427_1232_077+079+080+082 Pied Wagtail seeing & grabbing invertibrate on track verge 2+4+5+7 of 9 (montage @10fps).jpg

The moment of capture between the bottom two images in the montage.

Ref: D73_20200427_1232_081 Pied Wagtail spotting & grabbing invertibrate on track verge 6 of 9 (crop).jpg

18 May 2020

Lady's Smock (Cuckoo Flower) is a generous nectar provider, and the orange-tip Butterflies make the most of it.

Ref: D73_20200427_1223_012 Orange-tip Butterfly male feeding from Ladys Smock (Cuckoo Flower) flower.jpg

The insect on the right shows the Proboscis partially coiled.

Ref: D73_20200427_1224_022+025+026 Orange-tip Butterfly male around Ladys Smock (Cuckoo Flower) flowers (montage).jpg

Here the male Orange-tip Butterfly is backing away from the flower, his Proboscis still extended.

Ref: D73_20200427_1225_032 Orange-tip Butterfly male flying to Ladys Smock (Cuckoo Flower) flower with proboscis already uncurled.jpg

17 May 2020

This young Rook is making it very clear that it wants F O O D !

Ref: DF3_20200426_1605_235 Rook chick in nest begging from adult (crop 2).jpg

It hard to see what is going on in nests 10 metres above your head, but this is definitely 2 young Rooks in this nest. One has it's beak at the centre of the frame, and the other is facing left with beak tip hidden by the branch around which the nest is constructed.

Ref: D73_20200427_1221_002 Rook by nest containing 2 chicks.jpg

16 May 2020

A male Chaffinch calling his territorial ownership to any other bird in earshot.

Ref: DF3_20200424_1737_071-071 Chaffinch male singing from top of conifer 1-3 of 3 (montage).jpg

15 May 2020

A White Bluebell spike. This robust plant looks like a cultivar or hybrid.

Ref: DF3_20200424_1246_041 Bluebell white.jpg

Next day its the turn of a what looks like the classic British Bluebell in the 'normal' coloured Blue, and a Pink variety.

Ref: DF3_20200425_1249_123 Bluebell flowers.jpg

Cow Parsley displays it's delicate flower head along the concrete track boarders - and a few days later all over the place.

Ref: DF3_20200425_1239_116 Cow Parsley (1st of 2020).jpg

Red Campion is one of the regular wild flowers.

Ref: DF3_20200426_0923_142 Red Campion flower.jpg

14 May 2020

The 'new' Tawny Owl makes a neat landing on the kitchen perch

Ref: E60_20200424_0311_019_FB3 Tawny Owl landing on kitchen perch 30 mins after meadow post (crop).jpg

Little and  Large Medium
A surprise appearance by a Wren on the meadow post is contrasted with the much larger Tawny Owl. But even a Tawny Owl is not a particularly large bird.

Ref: D01_20200424_0654_040+0233_033_FB6 Wren + Tawny Owl on Meadow Post 2 of 3 (montage at same scale).jpg

13 May 2020

Dark streaks of cloud suggest a rolling landscape off into the distance.

Ref: DF3_20200430_0726_015 Streaks of cloud suggesting distant hills 3 of 3 (crop).jpg

A Rabbit (background) comes out as the day ends.
The Rabbit may have had some unpleasant encounters with Grey squirrels, and keeps a safe distance from the Squirrel.

Ref: E64_20200424_1959_108_FB2 Grey Squirrel watching distant rabbit at sunset.jpg

12 May 2020

This Tawny Owl makes a short visit to the kitchen window perch just before midnight.

Ref: E60_20200421_2312_031_FB3 Tawny Owl landing.jpg

This Fox looks back as they stop on the climb up the mound.

Ref: BU2_20200422_2153_285_SC7 Fox looking back from slope of Round Mound (IR).jpg

11 May 2020

We are delighted to report that one of the female Reeve's Muntjac Deer has had a Fawn! Here are left to right are the Dad, Fawn and Mum in the gloom of evening. Try to imagine their little hard hooves clicking their way along our concrete access track.

Ref: BU3_20200418_1957_096_SC6 Muntjac Reeves Deer female + Fawn + male 1 of 2 (crop).jpg

Next day the early afternoon lighting provides a much better pic of just Mum and her Fawn at the same place.

Ref: BU3_20200419_1418_155_SC6 Muntjac Reeves Deer Female + Fawn (crop off edge of frame).jpg

20 minutes later Mum and Fawn arrive 100m away across the other side of our plot.

Ref: BU4_20200419_1437_073 Muntjac Reeves Deer female and Fawn 2 of 3 (crop).jpg

Three days later, dark enough for the camera to switch to IR illumination, Mum and Fawn are still roaming the plot.
We think the Fawn may be looking for the 'Milk Bar'

Ref: BU4_20200422_2017_093 Muntjac Reeves Deer female & Fawn.jpg

10 May 2020

Story continued from yesterday
This Tawny owl arrived for a look at the roadkill Hare, but didn't stay.

Ref: E62_20200420_0145_275_FB5 Tawny Owl inspecting roadkill Hare (crop).jpg

A Magpie samples the increasingly odiferous carcass of the roadkill Hare.

Ref: E62_20200420_0918_010_FB5 Magpie eating roadkill Hare (crop).jpg

At nearly 3.30 a.m. this Badger turns up to examine the still substantial roadkill Hare remains.
The Badger may have blocked the beam while feeding on it, or just wandered away - we don't know which.

Ref: E62_20200421_0322_070_FB5 Badger eating and then dragging off Hare roadkill 1 of 2 (crop).jpg

20 minutes later this Badger drags away the roadkill Hare remains. To us this looks like a different individual to the earlier visit.
Next morning, the site now empty, we looked for indications of where the carcass was dragged, but found no signs.

Ref: E62_20200421_0343_071_FB5 Badger eating and then dragging off Hare roadkill 2 of 2 (crop 1).jpg

09 May 2020

A sad little tale that starts a few days before the major events. In the middle of the day we spotted a lone Hare lolloping through the crop on the field across our access track. Grabbing a picture, and noting to keep an eye out for them in this field, we just kept this pic 'for the record'.

Ref: DF3_20200415_1351_020 Hare in adjoining field to west (crop).jpg

4 days later, at the end of our access track at about 8.45 a.m. we spotted a mound of brown fur lying in the middle of the road. We took a barrow up the road to it and sadly discovered that it was a Hare which we brought back to the meadow camera site. We have to assume that this 'lost' Hare got through the pig-net and onto the road and met it's end under the wheels of a passing vehicle.

Ref: DF3_20200419_0901_009 Hare roadkill placed at FB5 (meadow) (orig).jpg

In the daytime we saw only Magpies visiting to eat the roadkill Hare - not one sighting of any other Corvid despite the area being awash with Rooks and a few Jackdaws.

Ref: E62_20200419_1203_195_FB5 Hare roadkill being eaten by Magpie (crop).jpg

This moment of a Magpie pecking at the roadkill Hare is a crop from a Camcorder frame.
Story continues tomorrow ...

Ref: PC2_20200419_xxxx_xxx Magpie eating roadkill Hare (crop from 4k video).jpg

08 May 2020

A Bumble Bee flying in to feed on the flower of a White Dead-nettle.

Ref: DF3_20200419_1225_014 Bumble Bee approaching White Dead Nettle.jpg

This decades old Apple tree is notable because EVERYTHING is red - flowers, the wood and sap, the skin of the apple as well as the flesh. It makes a good cooking apple even if whatever you make comes out pink!
Only when we worked on this photo did we spot the Comma Butterfly at the top, and a fly just to the Butterfly's left. That crenelated wing edge is marvellous camouflage.

Ref: D73_20200419_1526_019 Blossom of Red apple tree with Comma Butterfly and fly.jpg

The first sighting this year of a Speckled Wood Butterfly. This by far the most numerous Butterfly here, and is about for many months.

Ref: DF3_20200420_1102_020 Speckled Wood Butterfly on emerging beech leaves (1st of 2020).jpg

Part of a Lilac Flower head, individual flowers from closed to fully open. Some of the closed flowers seem sprinkled with pollen dust from the already open flowers.

Ref: D73_20200419_1738_026 Lilac Flower head (crop 2 - pollen detail).jpg

07 May 2020

A pristine Badger wanders through the Meadow site.

Ref: E62_20200416_2117_032_FB5 Badger (crop 1).jpg

A closer look at the badgers face.

Ref: E62_20200416_2117_032_FB5 Badger (crop 2).jpg

Hi Brock - hoping to find another Hare for supper?
The same Badger visits the night after we think the same Badger dragged away a roadkill Hare from this site

Ref: E62_20200421_2217_035_FB5 Badger.jpg

06 May 2020

A triplet of Mallard ducks - the 'standard' 1 female and 2 males spent several minutes circling the area.
Unexpectedly they decided to touch down in the margin of the field to our east. Here the female is at the left, with one male about to land and the other doing a rather inelegant bellyflop. Mallard ducks are not very good at landing on solid ground but 'any landing you can walk away from is good'.

Ref: DF3_20200416_1753_018 Mallard Duck female + 2 males landing after extended flight (adjusted crop).jpg

The 3 Duck waddled about quacking, and finally the female launched to the east, so of course the males quickly followed, and the montage tries to give an impression of the event.
We see interactions of this sort so often in Spring that we are convinced that the female is finding out which of the males best handles her 'Assault course' before she offers to mate with him.

Ref: DF3_20200416_1755_076-084 Mallard Duck males and female restart group flight chase 01+03+06+09 of 15 (approx montage).jpg

05 May 2020

Here is the brilliant yellow flowering Dandelion with the flowers shadowed on a lump of broken concrete.
We were asked how this brilliant flower turns into the white seed head we all know as a Dandelion Clock.
We didn't know so decided to find out ...

Ref: DF3_20200422_1120_049 Dandelion flower with shadow.jpg

Here is a Dandelion that has finished flowering but not yet turned to seed. The withering leaves are at the top and the recessive green seed capsule is below. The seeds develop in the capsule for what seems to be 2 or 3 days.

Ref: DF3_20200422_0857_037 Dandelion seed capsule with wilted petals.jpg

With little warning the seed capsule starts to open from the base to turn the wind-dispersed seeds into the well known sphere. Images 1 to 10 are cropped from 90 minutes of 4K video at 10 minute intervals. All but 05 to 06 (that's top right to bottom left) skip 1 image, so most of the intervals are 20 minutes. If you look for these events in progress it is hard to find - the unopened seed capsules are difficult to find among the bright yellow and white, and the partly open globe looks like a partially wind blown finished head.

Ref: PC2_20200423_1058_001-1228_010 Dandelion seed head (clock) opening 01+03+05+06+08+10 of 10 (montage @10mins per frame).jpg

Here is the same 90 minute sequence of the opening Dandelion seed head animated in just 10 seconds, here all at about 10 minute intervals

Ref: dandelion seed head (clock) opening over 90 minutes.gif

04 May 2020

Groundsel has gone 'mad' this year, appearing in swathes is various places on the Farm land. These tiny seed heads (like Dandelions but about a quarter of the diameter) cover a patch at the edge of the crop.

Ref: D73_20200416_0718_022 Groundsel on field margin turning to seed.jpg

On the south side of the house the Dandelions are sheltered from the wind from the east so these head are still intact.
Two days later heavy rain smashed the seed heads to bits.

Ref: D73_20200416_1234_013 Dandelion seed heads.jpg

Photographs always seeming to mislead about size, so here is a direct comparison of Dandelion and Groundsel 'clocks' 'in the hand'..

Ref: D73_20200418_1616_001 Dandelion seed head and Groundsel seed head size comparison.jpg

03 May 2020

We struggle identifying 'Little Brown Birds', but from the bird's call we believe it to be a Chiffchaff

Ref: DF3_20200415_1739_048+49 Chiffchaff perched in willow tree 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

02 May 2020

A Bee-fly hovers in the sunshine
Completely Harmless! - that long probe is NOT a stinger!

Ref: DF3_20200414_1623_068 Bee-fly hovering.jpg

We believe that this is a 'Cinnamon Bug' with a Vivid orange and Black colouration.

Ref: DF3_20200412_1225_077 Cinnamon bug aka Black and Red Squash Bug (Corizus hyoscyami) (crop).jpg

Several sightings of these 7-Spot Ladybirds so far this year - more than for the occasional invasive (if now inevitable) Harlequin Ladybird.

Ref: DF3_20200409_1514_001 7 Spot Ladybird (1st of 2020).jpg

01 May 2020

Orange-tip Butterflies males fruitlessly looking for females, not yet emerged from their over-wintered chrysalises, are now rewarded with a female to entice. Here are 4 moments from an attempted seduction.
The male has the orange tips, but the female doesn't. They both have that wonderful green and white marbling under the wing.

Ref: D73_20200412_1617_154+1618_161+175+1620_191 Orang-tip Butterfly pair courting (montage).jpg

2 days later presumably a different couple of Orange-tip Butterfly 'getting to know each other'.

Ref: DF3_20200414_1252_047+1251_027 Orange-tip butterflies courting on Blackberry leaves (montage).jpg

All this chasing girls is hard work.
Here a male Orange-tip Butterfly refuels on what we think is a Ground Ivy flower.

Ref: DF3_20200414_1455_060 Orange-tip Butterfly feeding on Ground Ivy flower.jpg



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