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Archived & Upcoming Images of the Day
One of the rare visits of the Barn Owl starts with this delightful spread of wings.
Over the next 7 minutes the Barn Owl turned their back to the camera as they moved around searching the area - mostly with their ears!
Our lovely male pheasant manages to take a selfie including his whole length.
The female Pheasant appears to be the individual we have only previously seen lurking around Round Pond.
Our two friendly (sisters?) female Pheasants feed quietly together in a vague
interpretation of the Yin-yang symbol.
Wanting to have Yin-yang spelt correctly, we discovered spaced, hyphenated, joined together and various capitalisations. Pick your favourite
What looks like our regular male Pheasant is here seen outside our patch on the farm crop. Although over 100m away he wasn't pleased to see us, and started running off over the crop to the hedge at the bridleway. The droopy tail feathers suggests that the overall dark colour is because his feathers have become soaked in the seemingly endless rain.
An evening landing by a Tawny Owl on the Tree-stump
At 4 a.m. of the same night probably the same Tawny Owl visits the meadow post for at least 5 minutes.
5 hours apart we see what looks like the same Grey squirrel in almost identical positions on either side of the fallen branch.
Carrot ends seem to be a favourite among some of the Grey Squirrels.
Absolutely no photo-fiddling here - just a line-of-sight effect.
Our current male Pheasant takes his selfie.
This Wood Pigeon spends a few minutes searching around the Meadow site. After the easy access stuff, its head-down into the collapsed mouse tunnel 'pothole'.
Caught in an atypical position we see this Hare investigating the Leaf-litter with rear legs partly unfolded showing just how long they are.
The only 'sighting' of an Owl in a week is this Tawny Owl landing at the edge of Round Pond at the end of a night's hunting.
Sightings of Jays here are normally restricted to the automatic camera sites or
glimpses on bird tables. But here we see one feeding on the grass along the
field margin by the brook (about 100m away). The Jay takes off and rises up
to land on a branch of one of the trees lining the brook.
We offer 3 montages - the flight and landing in context, a closer view, and finally the last 3 moments in nearly camera resolution.
Some of you may remember the saga of the deeply ring-barked Willow pollard that just didn't die. Some minor trunks of the pollard did, and have been used for a few years by basking Squirrels. Their endless chewing of the dead wood has accumulated to the point where the remains are an almost abstract sculpture.
A Grey Squirrel poses elegantly on the Kitchen bird table.
A little reminiscent of women in our youth looking at the back of their legs to see if the stocking seam is straight!
Grey Squirrels really do seem to have a 'thing' for apples.
This is at the Hedge Bottom.
10 minutes later at the Meadow site we see another 'Apple attack' by what the different fur pattern suggests is a different Squirrel. We THINK the Squirrel is rolling the apple into the collapsed Mouse hole to keep it still to dig into the apple with their teeth.
Grey Squirrels seem to go 'ape' over small apples left over from Autumn.
No Apples left? This whole banana skin will have to do.
Reeve's Muntjac Deer are mainly creatures of the night, but here at noon out of the Kitchen windows we see this male quietly foraging along the edge of the main pond.
A mid-morning sighting of a male Reeves' Muntjac Deer quietly foraging along the Bridleway to our north. He must have been pretty intent on feeding not to notice us stopping for these pics and then passing some 50m away.
The female Reeves' Muntjac Deer (left) has entered through the normal hedge gap. The male (right) seems to have come in by another route - these seemingly impenetrable hedge stems are little barrier to creatures of this size.
As Vegans we eat quite a lots of nuts all year, and enjoy the Christmas glut of fresh nuts available from the supermarkets. Here this Grey Squirrel is using his sharp front teeth to scrape out the cooked Chestnut husks of fragments that our cutlery missed.
A Tawny Owl landing at the Woodland site, not apparently catching anything.
The shadows of the primary feathers make this pic a bit confusing - the bird is facing right with their right eye just above the centre of the frame.
The first of just 2 visits in one night to the Meadow Post by a Tawny Owl - this one just after dark. There is nothing close by over the post so we don't know what the owl is looking at.
The second of just 2 visits to the Meadow Post by a Tawny Owl - this one just before dawn. Again we don't know what the owl is looking at in the middle frame.
A Wood Pigeon delicately swivels their head in an arc to pick up and swallow all the corn they can reach before moving on.
Grey Squirrels don't 'shovel in' corn - they always carefully nibble it
held in their paws. While endearing to watch, it is probably that the
corns need to be crumbled up for their digestive systems to extract
Birds have a gizzard to break up hard foods that Squirrels do not.
Sparrowhawk sightings are normally rather transient affairs, but this Sparrowhawk, obviously wet from a bath, is now having a bask and a preen in an Ash tree on the other side of the main pond.
These moments of the Sparrowhawk are here a little rescaled for consistency from 2 different cameras.
Here is the Sparrowhawk departing.
Left to right the bird is perched, turns and looks behind, and dives down and out of sight. This montage is extremely stretched horizontally.
A collapsed mouse tunnel is now big enough for a Grey Squirrel to comfortably stand in. Banana is on the menu at this moment.
What else is there down here?
This Wood Pigeon has their head down into the ever expanding hole started by the collapsed mouse hole.
At the hedge bottom the male Pheasant manages to photograph himself with his head out of the top of the frame. It seems likely that he is making his characteristic call, fluffing out his feathers as he does so making this what we think is a lovely almost abstract study
The male Pheasant here standing in the collapsed Mouse tunnel.
Here are two of his four 'lady friends' / Harem
The camera catches this lovely Rook at the hedge bottom. His feathers are glistening in the camera flash.
Rook Central - 4 old nests and about 20 birds in various stages of courtship.
An interesting size comparison - Rook on the left, Jackdaw on the right.
It is very unusual for us to get to see a Jay other than as a photo in one of the automatic cameras, but here we see one across main pond having an extensive preen after a rather thorough bath. After grabbing a few pics through the window a magpie decided they wanted the same perch and chased off this little delight before immediately flying off themselves.
We surprise the local Sparrowhawk as we exit from the front of the house.
The images are at 7 fps but arbitrarily spaced.
A closer look at the first of the sequence.
Obviously being startled by humans does not deter this particular Sparrowhawk for very long, here landing on the Kitchen perch about 20m away a couple of hours later. Some individuals abandon an area for a day or more if disturbed, others just give it 'a while' before returning.
In a few minutes sequence of Tawny Owl visits in the whole week, one of the arrivals includes the tail end of some unfortunate creature still on the way down the hatch.
A few minutes later the same Tawny Owl lands on the Kitchen Window perch to take this selfie.
The male Pheasant has been getting himself into a sticky mess pecking through the clay based soil. This is at the hedge bottom.
80 minutes later, his beak still caked in mud, he spends 7 minutes at the Meadow Site.
Snow is really miserable for grazing and foraging mammals. They must eat to keep warm but finding every mouthful is an effort.
The following morning we see the male crossing the access track.
Four female Pheasant have suddenly started frequenting the sites. This one is at the Woodland site before snow ...
... and a day later after overnight snow this female Pheasant may be a little bewildered at the Meadow site.
Our first Pheasant 'pair' sighting this season, as this male 'guards' one of his Harem.
This site is largely sheltered by a large conifer and the snow has already melted just a day later.
The cold weather has increased the incidence of Rabbits at the camera sites. This one appears at about 4 a.m. No Hares seen recently inside or outside our patch.
Something we don't see often is these 'night' and 'day' shifts quietly co-existing.
Splashes of colour in a sea of nearly greys on the right seem a little
Reminds us of movies where the editor does tricks (sometimes CGI and sometimes set design) to colour only the character or thing they want to highlight.
We last saw any Lapwings 11 years ago (2011) on the last year that the fields around us were used as pasture. Stepping out of the back door finds a flock of about 8 were flying over, and the camera was swiftly swung up to catch 'tail-end-Charlie' flap their way across
At the back of the main pond we have 2 Viburnum Birkwoodii bushes that create some lift from the winter gloom by flowering in the winter. This group of buds is covered in frost icicles, but expect to flower anyway.
Many of the plants are covered in these spiky icicles. We can't see quite why they form and may spend a little while researching it.
This is the back of the IR beam sender that triggers the camera focussed on the top of the Meadow Post, with a still intact Spider's web now heavily frosted.
Most of the snow (about 2.3mm of water which lays at something over 10 times the depth of snow) arrived overnight on the early hours of Monday (12th Dec) in what looks like a strong north wind. This passing fox triggered this camera which shows them probably carrying some prey in their mouth. Inspecting the frame that immediately follows, there is no sign of the pale area below the muzzle being in the background. The wind is from the North, and this and other camera facing even vaguely north soon becomes totally iced over. Tree trunks show snow adhering only to the north side.
"What's gone wrong with the world?"
This is our east hedge viewed from outside of the NE corner Even the evergreens are white.
What looks like a young Fox spends a few minutes by the thoroughly frozen Duck Pond before wandering across to look over the ice.
Where this Grey Squirrel found a clean Hazel nut we don't know. We have several Hazel trees but the nuts are normally snaffled by the Squirrels long before ripe.
After the high protein nut, some apple to fill the tummy.
Making their own snow shower, these 2 Grey Squirrels dispute ownership of the bird table.
This Dunnock has selected a corn kernel for a mid-morning feed.
We catch this Buzzard's flight while the bird is over the main road in flapping
flight, and watch as the bird changes to gliding along the 11kV cables before
swooping up to arrive at a cable at 0 m.p.h. Masterful control!
First a montage of the whole sequence, starting at one frame intervals, changing to alternate frames and finally a few 'selected' as the bird lands (the last 2 shuffled along the wire in the paint package).
Now 2 halves of the montage for more detail.
This Blue Tit makes a glowing dot in the hedge.
What looks like the same Robin spending 30 minutes at the hedge bottom
Our dominant male Pheasant spends several minutes working his way along the fallen branch
Song Thrushes are not regular visitors at any camera site, and even more unusual to see one here at the woodland site.
The colours on Green Woodpeckers are really quite intense.
We have NOT 'wound up the colour' - its something about the strange evening light
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