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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day

31 Dec 2021

A sly looking fox with a couple of hours hunting left in the night.

Ref: BUA_20211119_0328_043_SC8 Fox (IR).jpg

Next day a different Fox lies down by the Duck-shaped Pond.
Its hard work this night-time hunting.

Ref: BUB_20211120_0559_105 Fox lying down by Duck Pond (IR).jpg

After entering the site at the east hedge the Fox slyly peeks around the tree, but sees nothing to ambush.

Ref: BUA_20211122_1915_016+017_SC8 Fox entering site peers round tree 1+2 of 2 (montage).jpg

The female Reeve's Muntjac Deer at the bottom of the mound looks up at the arriving Fox coming over the top. A Fox could not tackle even a relatively small Muntjac Deer, but could certainly attack a Fawn.

Ref: BU2_20211123_0202_141_SC7 Muntjac Reeves Deer female watches Fox arriving at top of Mound (orig).jpg

30 Dec 2021

An unexpected visit by this Red-legged Partridge at the Woodland site. It's just past mid-day, but you wouldn't think it from the background light.

Ref: E64_20211124_1315_232_FB2 Red-legged Partridge.jpg

The Conservatory is usually too cold to make pleasant sitting 'out' for the next few months, so we don't see the Sparrowhawk flashing past the Windows doing her circuits of the peanut feeders around the house. But this pic assures us that she is still 'doing the rounds'.

Ref: E60_20211124_1449_039_FB3 Sparrowhawk launching from Kitchen perch.jpg

The sun isn't offering a lot of radiant warmth at this time of year, but what there is this Squirrel is having some.

Ref: D72_20211121_1220_048 Grey Squirrel sunbathing on pollarded Willow tree stump.jpg

29 Dec 2021

Two Rooks treating this 11kV cable as an avian 'Love Seat'.

Ref: D72_20211121_1055_038 2 Rooks courting on 11KB cable (crop).jpg

Next day these two Rooks are pairing up in the Black Poplar trees.

Ref: DF3_20211122_0955_008 Rook pair in Black Poplar Tree.jpg

28 Dec 2021

The new Female Kestrel doesn't provide any opportunities for hand-held portraits, but she hunts while hovering much more than 'Grey Feather', so here is one of her near the Bridleway to the north, hovering in front of an 11kV cable. The hover starts at the top and this sequence, with a cable a useful vertical reference, and a tower (cropped out) providing horizontal positioning, shows how well the Kestrel keeps station.
Here is a general view of about 1.3 seconds of action ...

Ref: D72_20211121_1045_009-019 Kestrel female hovering near 11kV cables 01-11 of 11 (montage 1 @8fps).jpg

... and here more detail of the bird to see the wings and tail in action.

Ref: D72_20211121_1045_009-019 Kestrel female hovering near 11kV cables 01-11 of 11 (montage 3 @8fps).jpg

A few hours later the female Kestrel spent at least 10 minutes at the Meadow Post. The sun came out after a few minutes transforming her colour scheme!

Ref: D01_20211121_1516_027-1525_045_FB6 Kestrel female 10+ min visit to Meadow Post 01+02+05+08+10 of 10 (montage).jpg

A moment not included in the Kestrel montage above.

Ref: D01_20211121_1524_043_FB6 Kestrel female 10+ min visit to Meadow Post 09 of 10 (crop).jpg

27 Dec 2021

Our currently resident male Pheasant with a slight quirky look.
Its 9.25 a.m., but it looks like the Sun's alarm didn't go off.

Ref: E64_20211120_0925_118_FB2 Pheasant male.jpg

The new 'resident' male Pheasant is totally anti-human - the merest sight of the photographer sends the beautiful creature into a sprint - a behaviour that may serve him well should he meet a shooter

Ref: D72_20211124_1108_011+014+017+020 Pheasant male running over grass to hedge (accurate montage @8fps every third frame).jpg

26 Dec 2021

All of the current Reeve's Muntjac Deer visitors are exceptionally skittish at any sight of a human. This male didn't spot the cameraman on the other side of a ground-floor window, so here are a couple of moments as this male helped to clear the salad bed of weeds!

Ref: DF5_20211118_1356_017+027 Muntjac Reeves Deer male browsing in salad bed (montage).jpg

"Hiya Babe!"

Ref: BU5_20211112_1850_102_SC1 Muntjac Reeves Deer female inside pond watches male on bank.jpg

25 Dec 2021

Our first ever sighting of a Woodcock, here at the hedge bottom site.
For several days we have spotted single holes in muddy patches around the site, but didn't know what has made them.

Ref: E63_20211115_1644_040_FB1 Woodcock (crop).jpg

24 Dec 2021

A few moments from an extended visit (i.e. over 10 minutes) by this Tawny Owl to the meadow post.

Ref: D01_20211114_1753_047-065_FB6 Tawny Owl 10+ minutes visit to Meadow Post 01+03+05+10 of 10 (montage).jpg

This Barn Owl visit, after many weeks of absence, was taken at 2.45 a.m.

Ref: D01_20211119_0245_001+246_003_FB6 Barn Owl 4 minute visit to meadow post 1+2 of 4 (montage).jpg

23 Dec 2021

This feast of browns and green along the edge of the Brook really caught our eye in the sunshine. The unbroken green of the Ivy covering the tree-trunk looks almost surreal against the bare bole of the tree.

Ref: DF3_20211117_0839_014 Ivy covered tree-trunk at brook.jpg

Our Sycamore trees are outstanding for a canopy of Autumn leaves.

Ref: DF3_20211117_0832_001 Sycamore in Autumn colour along south hedge (orig & final).jpg

22 Dec 2021

Turn your back on the bait-bag for a few minutes and you come back to find a Squirrel making the most of the largess. It must have been IN the bag to reach the peanuts in the nearly empty bag.

Ref: DF3_20211113_1458_012 Grey Squirrel nibbling peanut stolen from bait bag.jpg

We thought the issue of this open-able peanut feeder was solved, but it clearly isn't. On the right image you see the white cable tie that was holding the lid on. These clear plastic ties deteriorate in sunlight and become brittle, and it looks like the Squirrel nibbled an edge and started a crack that broke the strap. We put the 'other' similar feeder back while we find a foolproof scheme.

Ref: PK1_20211117_1305_912+1306_929+939 Grey Squirrel raids nut feeder after removing top (montage).jpg

21 Dec 2021

A Robin photographs themselves twice in a minute on the tree-stump.

Ref: D36_20211113_0658_031+0659_032_FB4 Robin visits tree-stump (montage over 1 minute).jpg

20 Dec 2021

Two glorious colours at once - a scatter of Autumn turned Sycamore leaves and stepping over them a very smart male Pheasant matching some of the colours.

Ref: BU9_20211111_0923_016+018_SC2 Pheasant male walking through autumn leaf litter (accurate montage).jpg

The North hedge of our patch with a mix of yellows, browns and green as the huge mix of different trees choose to welcome Autumn in their various ways.

Ref: D72_20211115_1509_065+068+071 Pineham Field North hedge from Farm entrance (montage for width).jpg

After planting a Sumac at out first house about 1970, moving here 1990 we found a couple of such trees in the front garden which we have allowed to develop into several trees. They are so robust they have to be hacked back every other year or so, but always come back thriving.

Ref: D72_20211115_1517_092 Sumac in front garden showing Autumn colours (orig & final).jpg

19 Dec 2021

The 11kV cable you see here is near the Farm Road entrance over the hedge. The Rook was busy pecking at something clamped to the wire by the bird's claws. The larger part of the item the Rook allowed to drop into the hedge (not caught on camera). The bird then went chasing after the remains of the item which appears to be a spouted Bean seed (the last crop was field beans). The bird lowered the whole body below the wire while hanging on to the cable above with the claws. But the bird also dropped the bean seed (third to fifth frames) into the hedge. After a few seconds the bird released one claw, then the other to 'fall' into flight.
We have never seen anything like it before except in joke cartoons.

Ref: DF3_20211111_1112_045-074 Rook with sprouting bean on cable drops shoot & hangs below wire but also drops bean 2+4+8-10+15+17+19-21 of 21 (montage @7fps).jpg

More detail of the Rook hanging from the cable above just after dropping the Bean.

Ref: DF3_20211111_1112_062 Rook with sprouting bean on cable drops shoot & hangs below wire but also drops bean 14 of 21 (crop).jpg

18 Dec 2021

Some views of Autumn colour - here outside our East hedge.

Ref: DF3_20211109_0839_008 Autumn colours outside east hedge (orig & final).jpg

Some views of Autumn colour - here along the Brook to the north.

Ref: DF3_20211109_0844_019 Autumn colours along brook (orig & final).jpg

The Lombardy Poplars along the Farm Road are all starting 'the Fall' in the same manner.
We understand that Lombardy Poplars are all clones of one another so don't show much variation in behaviour.

Ref: DF3_20211112_1343_027 Farm Road Lombardy Poplars in Autumn colour.jpg

17 Dec 2021

A mid-morning delight was watching the suckling Fawn drinking their morning fill from Mum. She was intermittently grooming the Fawn as the Fawn got really quite rough 'pumping' the udder up and down to get at the last drop! The lower pic shows Mum starting to not enjoy the youngster's behaviour.

Ref: DF5_20211107_1013_018-035 Muntjac Reeves Deer suckles from mother at main pond 2+3 of 6 (montage).jpg

The next moment is caught as an MP4 video you may be able to view.
You see here the natural speed 'pumping' action - we think that you will agree that it really is rather OTT. Mum decides she has 'had enough' and walks away over her disappointed youngster.
The file is about 10MB for 10 seconds of grabbed (silent) HD video and may take a few seconds to load.
Video of Reeves Muntjac Deer Fawn feeding from_mother
Once the feed had finished Mum affectionately grooms her Baby - all is forgiven.

Ref: DF5_20211107_1015_051 Muntjac Reeves Deer suckles from mother at main pond 6 of 6 (crop).jpg

16 Dec 2021

One of the female Kestrels lands on the meadow post. She is in shadow so is a bit colour-cast compared to the sunlit background.

Ref: D01_20211101_1349_019+020_FB6 Kestrel female lending on Meadow Post 1+2 of 2 (montage over 400mS).jpg

One of the female Kestrels leaves the disused telephone pole near the south hedge.

Ref: D72_20211104_1029_004-005 Kestrel female takes off from post top 1-3 of 3 ((montage).jpg

15 Dec 2021

This 'Yellow Slug' seems to have started the climb up the mini-mountain, didn't see anything interesting from the top so started back down. The eye stalks show better as shadows.

Ref: E63_20211030_2038_197_FB1 Yellow slug on hedge bottom stone with eye stalks visible and casting shadow.jpg

This abstract pattern is the tail tip of a Grey Squirrel.

Ref: E64_20211107_1405_262_FB2 Grey Squirrel seen with circles effect on tail (crop).jpg

14 Dec 2021

A beam of late afternoon sun penetrates 100 metres of woodland to shine on the ear of this sweet female Reeve's Muntjac Deer.

Ref: BUA_20211028_1627_065_SC8 Muntjac Reeves Deer female looking back at camera in dappled light.jpg

The male Reeve's Muntjac Deer follows the Deer equivalent of Chanel No 5? The male Deer must catch the moment that the female is receptive to mating.

Ref: BU7_20211104_1217_016 Muntjac Reeves Deer male following female towards south entrance.jpg

13 Dec 2021

The markings on Magpies are a wonder.
The Black/wide divide on the wings runs diagonally across the feathers, and the tips of the primaries (the main flight feathers) are tipped with Grey.
And we can't even see the back and tail in this landing.

Ref: D01_20211103_1504_205_FB6 Magpie landing on Meadow Post.jpg

Most Raptors will eat worms when they have not been successful with their preferred prey, but the worms are usually swallowed 'on the spot', so we don't know why this female Kestrel brought one to the Meadow Post top to swallow.

Ref: D01_20211103_1527_211+212_FB6 Kestrel female on meadow post with worm in beak 1(mirrored)+2 of 2 (montage over 400mS).jpg

12 Dec 2021

Not seen before in this calendar year, a Stoat appears at the meadow site twice about 30 minutes apart. This first appearance provides this better image.

Ref: E6A_20211102_1245_114_FB5 Stoat 1 of 2 (crop).jpg

11 Dec 2021

On an otherwise moderately windy day, about 10 a.m. saw an intense wind lasted only about 15 minutes but the whole area suffered various levels of damage. This pic of the storm through the kitchen window shows EVERYTHING bending right in the Westerly gale. The air was full of twigs and leaves whipping across horizontally, but the camera misses most of them - blurred out by their speed.
Note that the timestamps are a mix of BST & GMT as the affair completely messed up our normally systematic tour of the cameras to do the end of summer-time updates.

Ref: PK1_20211031_1006_797 Freak short storm damage - before during & after - during storm thu kitchen window 19 of 24 (crop).jpg

At least 6 trees have fallen or broken off, and three of our normal access paths are completely blocked by fallen wood.
    Top left is a badly broken conifer that has half smothered Round Mound.
    Bottom right is a freshly fallen Squirrel Drey.
    Left of the Drey image is an Oak tree near the SE corner, now bereft of it's crown hanging down blocking the path beside it.

Ref: D71_20211031_1520_003_etc Freak short storm damage - before during & aftermath - our site 07-09+11+12 of 24 (montage).jpg

A closer look at the poor Oak tree with all three major branches snapped off. The wind seems to funnel through various places, and it seems that the Oak was 'in the wrong place at the wrong time'.

Ref: D71_20211031_1542_054 Freak short storm damage - before during & aftermath - Oak at SE 10 of 24 (orig & final).jpg

10 Dec 2021

Through the conservatory window this Squirrel is seen pulling at apples high in the tree. Finally one comes away and the Squirrel brings the prize down to this almost level branch to gorge. The Squirrel eats about half of the apple before leaving the rest.

Ref: DF3_20211030_1821_016 Grey Squirrel eat apple just plucked from further up tree.jpg

A not-so-sweet Grey Squirrel chases off a Magpie who dared not to leave the moment the Squirrel arrived.

Ref: E63_20211028_1734_042_FB1 Grey Squirrel chases Magpie from hedge bottom.jpg

A Grey Squirrel - Magpie mix usually sees the Mammal chasing away the bird. But here we see the same pairing quietly eating peanuts together.
So the Squirrel is probably the much more sociable female of the species!

Ref: E6A_20211101_1522_048_FB5 Grey Squirrel and Magpie quietly eating Peanuts together (crop).jpg

09 Dec 2021

A rare occurrence - the Sparrowhawk landing on the meadow post and staying for almost 10 minutes.

Ref: D01_20211030_1058_001-1105_015_FB6 Sparrowhawk female 9 minute visit to meadow post 1+2+4-6 of 6 (montage).jpg

A closer look at frame 3 omitted from the selection above.

Ref: D01_20211030_1100_005_FB6 Sparrowhawk female 9 minute visit to meadow post 3 of 6 (crop).jpg

A weather front approaching from the South West displayed really 3-D 'ramparts' of clouds above the grey base an hour or so after sunrise.

Ref: DF3_20211022_0853_019 Cloud bank to SW (crop & adjust).jpg

08 Dec 2021

As male Deer follow females about in the hope of mating it is easy to think that the 'girls' just have to 'put up with it'. But as the females reach Oestrus (USA Estrus) suddenly it becomes apparent that the females welcome the male attention.

Ref: BUB_20211028_2030_019 Muntjac Reeves Deer male looks back at female.jpg

Next night we see (right) the female waiting for the male to keep up with her. 30 minutes later we see them near Round Pond with the females vertical tail inviting a mating attempt.

Ref: BU5_20211029_1917_119_SC1+BUA_1857_133_SC8 Muntjac Reeves Deer Pair - female inviting mating (montage right to left).jpg

This little 'family group' of Reeve's Muntjac Deer wandered past the Duck-shaped Pond. Mum on the left probably licking the Fawn's head, as Dad quietly follows.

Ref: BU8_20211103_1734_151 Muntjac Reeves Deer Mother + Fawn + Father 2 of 3 (crop).jpg

07 Dec 2021

One of the female Kestrels lands on the Meadow post in a seriously gloomy morning.

Ref: D01_20211027_0759_053_FB6 Kestrel female landing on meadow post in gloomy morning 1 of 2.jpg

2 days later this female Kestrel chooses a fine afternoon to land on the same post.

Ref: D01_20211029_1441_035+036_FB6 Kestrel female landing on meadow post (montage 400mS apart).jpg

A female Kestrel doesn't often visit the bird table / perch outside the kitchen, but on this occasion stayed long enough for a few portraits as she cleans herself up, most probably after a kill.

Ref: DF5_20211029_1340_009+019+020 Kestrel female preening on bird table 1+3+4 of 4 (montage).jpg

Twice we have photographed the same female Kestrel flying in this manner flying from the top of the concrete mains power pole, each time the next target being the top of the wooden mains power pole some 30m south. We have also startled her from this post top a couple of times as well this week, so have to assume she uses this hunting perch sequence on a regular basis - far more often than we are aware of.
Although called the 'Windhover', and 'ours' do hover when the wind is right, experience suggests that they are more 'Postwatchers' in a human built setting.

Ref: DF5_20211029_1647_006-009 Kestrel female flying from concrete power post to wooden power post 1-4 of 6 (impression montage).jpg

06 Dec 2021

This male Reeve's Muntjac Deer triggered this Head-and-Shoulders portrait at the meadow site. The inserts show his little Tusk casting a shadow in the camera flash, and the tip of his right Antler which has been broken off we know not how.

Ref: E6A_20211024_0122_257_FB5 Muntjac Reeves Deer male head and shoulders (crop with inserts).jpg

A female Reeve's Muntjac Deer passed through this camera site twice in a few days. The other pic had the top of the head missing instead of just the tip of the ear!

Ref: E64_20211024_1904_225_FB2 Muntjac Reeves Deer female at woodland site (uncropped).jpg

These two Badgers tumble down the Round Mound in a ball of fur, before quietly wandering off. Despite their toughness, even adult Badgers seem to be really playful.

Ref: BU2_20211024_0320_376+377+380_SC7 2 Badgers Rough & Tumble at Round Mound 1+2+5 of 6 (montage impression).jpg

05 Dec 2021

Fieldmice (Wood Mice) now at all of the ground level sites.
This montage is from two images taken 21 minutes apart.

Ref: E63_20211021_1946_116+20211021_2007_119_FB1 Fieldmice (Wood Mice) at Hedge bottom (montage 21 minutes apart).jpg

Unfortunately the exterior Mouse glut is mirrored by the invasion of mice inside our old house. We learnt a few years ago that some mice are too big to get into the live traps, or are not attracted top them, so Rats and Mouse traps catch the rest. The sad little corpses are welcomed by Magpie(s) - here carrying off 3 of them over a few minutes. The middle and right pics also show a juicy Leopard Slug, but the Magpie doesn't seem to fancy it.

Ref: D36_20211023_0731_046+0732_047+0744_048_FB4 Magpie carries away 3 dead Fieldmice (Wood Mice) leaving Leopard Slug (montage 1m+12m gaps).jpg

But the Fieldmice (Wood Mice) are not all doom - some 'like' the live traps and end up 'relocated' well away from the house.

Ref: D36_20211022_1745_042_FB4 Fieldmouse (Wood Mouse) released from live trap.jpg

04 Dec 2021

The Bounty of Autumn comes in many forms.
This Grey squirrel makes off with a couple of Rose Hips.

Ref: E6A_20211021_1602_040_FB5 Grey Squirrel carrying Rose Hips in mouth.jpg

Outside the south hedge this lactating Grey Squirrel watches the humans appearing, and then quietly walks into the hedge. The moment we are gone she will be back.

Ref: DF3_20211022_1450_024 Grey Squirrel female feeding outside south hedge.jpg


Ref: E60_20211027_1259_013_FB3 2 Grey Squirrels fighting on bird table.jpg

If you leave a bag of food unattended you should expect to return to find a Grey Squirrel feasting within!

Ref: DF3_20211026_1544_050 Grey Squirrel inside bait bag watches humans returning.jpg

03 Dec 2021

The Annual appearance of Shaggy Ink Cap fungus 'fruiting bodies' took place overnight. By the time we saw them something had already had a chew on several. This image shows most of the visible Fungi + details of an unopened and an opened and partly eaten fruiting bodies.

Ref: D72_20211020_0917_009+012+015 Shaggy Ink Cap Fungus opposite blocked gate (montage).jpg

Fungi under the ground (the Mycelium) may live for years, but the fruiting bodies (e.g. mushrooms and toadstools) generally survive for only a few days. Here is the same patch of grass only 3 days later - just a few fallen stalks.

Ref: DF3_20211023_1249_045 Shaggy Ink Cap fungus patch almost clear.jpg

Several 'Fairy Rings' of Fungi appear each year around some of the Farm Road Lombardy Poplars. The best one we pass by is at the south end outside of our east hedge, and is a more than three-quarters circle.

Ref: D72_20211020_0920_018+021 Fungus fairy ring around south end Lombardy poplar outside east hedge (montage).jpg

02 Dec 2021

Over 3 days we saw what looks like a single individual Moorhen visit the hedge-bottom site. Here are 3 of the better pics from the second & third days.

Ref: E63_20211016_1104_349-20211017_1522_474_FB1 Moorhen visiting hedge bottom over 3 days 4+6+8 of 9 (accurate montage).jpg

This Moorhen spent about 3 Hours coming and going from the Hedge bottom site.

Ref: E63_20211019_1055_194_FB1 Moorhen at hedge bottom.jpg

An assortment of pics of Moorhen visits over 2 Hours

Ref: E63_20211019_1209_204-1351_221_FB1 Moorhen at Hedge Bottom over 2Hrs (montage).jpg

01 Dec 2021

When the surrounding fields were used for raising 'Dairy replacement' cattle, flies in the house became something of a problem. One solution was to let spiders breed in corners of the house, catching many of the flies without us having to regularly use chemicals. The land is now 'arable' and flies much reduced in numbers, but we still let the spiders do their thing. Here in the kitchen hundreds emerge from an egg case.
Photo sizes can be deceptive - the ball is only about 6mm (quarter of an inch) across.

Ref: PK1_20211016_1059_770 Spiders hatching at top right of kitchen window (crop).jpg

"I'll get that flea if it kills me!"

Ref: E6A_20211017_1712_274_FB5 Grey Squirrel grooming.jpg

The Saga of the ill-fastened peanut feeder lid continues. We try to jam the top on - then Squirrels spend ages trying to wheedle their way in. This time one succeeded - on the right the Squirrel is holding two of the nuts won from displacing the lid.

Ref: E60_20211016_1736_036+20211017_1026_045_FB3 Grey Squirrel works top off peanut feeder next day eating 2 nuts (montage).jpg



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