Return to moorhen home page

Return to section index

Image-of-the-Day by Subject

Birds, Insects & Bats in flight (outdoors) Page 48

Image Taken on 16 Apr 2017 at 08:14    Image of day on 03 Jun 2017

Birds don't make facial expressions, but we can only see 'Joy' in this Skylark.

Ref: 20170603_df3_20170416_0814_336 skylark in flight 3 of 3 (crop)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 31 Mar 2017 at 13:33    Image of day on 18 May 2017

This is a fairly accurate montage of this Skylark initially dropping down and then using the speed gained to climb up again.

Ref: 20170518_df3_20170331_1333_136-145 skylark in flight against clouds 01-10 of 10 (aprox montage)(r+mb id@1024).jpg

Image Taken on 31 Mar 2017 at 13:33    Image of day on 18 May 2017

The male Skylarks have been putting on an enjoyable show.

Ref: 20170518_df3_20170331_1333_130-135 skylark in flight approaching clouds 1-6 of 6 (montage slightly stretched)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 17 Jun 2008 at 16:29    Image of day on 30 Jun 2008

Skylarks seem to spend some their time in flight with wings closed. Do wish we could include the liquid song, but even if we recorded it the noise from the camera would drown it out.

Ref: 20080630_dc1_20080617_1629_442 skylark in flight with wings almost closed(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 09 Apr 2017 at 10:22    Image of day on 31 May 2017

Skylarks ascending are reasonably predictable, but descents are erratic, very hard to follow, and the focus changes very fast. So here we were lucky (= lots of tries) to get this bird aerobraking to land in the corn crop.

Ref: 20170531_df3_20170409_1022_061-063 skylark landing in corn crop 1-3 of 4 (accurate montage @ 7fps)(r+mb id@432).jpg

Image Taken on 07 Jun 2011 at 10:22    Image of day on 10 Jul 2011

This skylark seem to have a nest about 300m away in the (still uncut but very sparse) meadow to our east and we got an atypically good view of the top of the wing.
Try to imagine the liquid silver song pouring from that open beak.

Ref: 20110710_df1_20110607_1022_039 skylark singing in flight (selected) 01 of 16 (crop)(r+mb id@432).jpg

Image Taken on 07 Jun 2011 at 10:22    Image of day on 10 Jul 2011

About 1 second of 'The Lark Ascending'.
The spacing and slope is reconstructed from memory and probably too close - see later.

Ref: 20110710_df1_20110607_1022_060-065 skylark singing in flight (selected) 09-14 of 16 (sequential impression montage @ 7fps)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 16 Mar 2014 at 09:57    Image of day on 24 Apr 2014

This Skylark was starting his ascent, singing his little heart out.
This is an accurate montage at about 4fps (so this is less than a second).

Ref: 20140424_df2_20140316_0957_346-349 skylark singing in flight 1-4 of 4 (accurate montage @ about 4fps)(r+mb id@1024).jpg

Image Taken on 08 Jun 2011 at 16:33    Image of day on 10 Jul 2011

And then he briefly got quite close to us overhead.

Ref: 20110710_df1_20110608_1633_602 skylark singing in flight 3 of 7 (crop @432)(r+mb id@432).jpg

Image Taken on 08 Jun 2011 at 15:13    Image of day on 10 Jul 2011

Next day some soft cumulus clouds gave us reference points to accurately space the images but were sparse enough not to flare out the images. So this is about half a second of 'flight' - skylarks seem to spend about half their time singing with wings firmly closed.

Ref: 20110710_df1_20110608_1513_296-298+1414_299 skylark singing in flight 3-6 of 8 (accurate montage @ 7fps)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 17 Apr 2012 at 10:13    Image of day on 11 May 2012

Over a corn crop in an adjacent field, this Skylark waves it's head about to direct the sound, creating the characteristic rise and fall in volume. Read left to right moving down - bottom right he stopped singing and started his dive to ground.

Ref: 20120511_df1_20120417_1013_055-118 skylark singing in flight turning head to direct sound (selected) 1-9 of 9 (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 09 Mar 2014 at 09:04    Image of day on 18 Apr 2014

One pair of Skylarks spent a minute or two fluttering round each other over the hedge. It was all so quick and random we can't find a suitable montage to express it, so here is a moment of the birds facing each other.
The 'adjusted' aspect was 'raising' the hedge a bit to provide some context.

Ref: 20140418_df2_20140309_0904_387 2 skylarks fluttering around each other over hedge 07 of 33 (adjusted crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 05 Aug 2014 at 05:58    Image of day on 16 Oct 2014

There are now many sites where we find scattered remains of snail shells broken on slabs of stone, drain covers and corrugated iron. We must have quite a few young Song Thrushes - and possibly now not so many slugs and snails!

Ref: 20141016_e64_20140805_0558_052_fb2 song thrush juvenile landing on log(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 05 Sep 2018 at 14:17    Image of day on 29 Oct 2018

4 images of a female Southern Hawker Dragonfly in this pic, if you can only find them spread across the confusing ground flying right to left.

Ref: 20181029_df3_20180905_1417_113-116 southern hawker dragonfly female in flight 1-4 of 4 (accurate montage @7fps)(r+mb id@1024).jpg

Image Taken on 05 Sep 2018 at 14:17    Image of day on 29 Oct 2018

This is a detail of the last image in the montage (far left).
The male of the Southern Hawker Dragonfly is our most commonly seen large Hawker, but we don't often see the females like this one except when depositing eggs at the edge of a pond, so a pleasing moment.

Ref: 20181029_df3_20180905_1417_116 southern hawker dragonfly female in flight 4 of 4 (crop)(r+mb id@576).jpg

Image Taken on 23 Aug 2012 at 12:16    Image of day on 06 Oct 2012

This female Southern Hawker dragonfly was flying into a strong wind allowing an unusual 3 images in succession to be in reasonable focus. You can see from the difficulty of seeing the wings against complex background the reason we use a simple 'blue sky' background in the indoor 'flight tunnel'

Ref: 20121006_df1_20120823_1216_060-062 southern hawker dragonfly female in flight @ 7fps 1-3 of 3 (horizontal spread montage)(r+mb id@1024).jpg

Image Taken on 05 Sep 2018 at 14:20    Image of day on 29 Oct 2018

Here our female Southern Hawker Dragonfly shows that her interest is hunting, here holding the remains of some food item in her legs and her mandibles do their thing.
The males of this species seem to spend far longer 'on the wing' than the females in order to guard their territory and be on the lookout for females.

Ref: 20181029_df3_20180905_1420_167 southern hawker dragonfly female in flight holding prey to mouth 2 of 4 (crop)(r+mb id@432).jpg

Image Taken on 08 Aug 2009 at 12:45    Image of day on 22 Sep 2009

Repeated attempts at getting a good high speed dragonfly-in-flight sequence got this unexpected moment of interest. The dragonfly spent a moment hovering and in the reaction time to press the shutter to store the last 1 second it turned round on the spot and flew back towards the camera (and then even more out of focus). The entire time for the montage shown was 0.166 second.

Ref: 20090922_cf1_20090808_1245_907+913+917+919 southern hawker dragonfly hover & sudden turning 60fps 13+19+21+23 of 27 (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 04 Oct 2016 at 15:08    Image of day on 19 Nov 2016

A hovering Southern Hawker Dragonfly showing us the crazy wing positions it uses to resist the effects of the wind and control it's position.

Ref: 20161119_df3_20161004_1508_062-065 southern hawker dragonfly hovering 1-4 of 5 (montage)(r+mb id@768).jpg

Image Taken on 09 Aug 2014 at 15:55    Image of day on 20 Oct 2014

The Southern Hawker Dragonfly making another quick turn - all this in half a second.

Ref: 20141020_df2_20140809_1555_430-433 southern hawker dragonfly in flight turning & flying back 01-04 of 11 (montage @ 7fps)(r+mb id@768).jpg




Comments and requests for image use

To make a comment, ask for information or to request a full resolution image, send us an email including the reference or the date for the image you are interested in.

All initial contacts should be made using the icon below:-

Mail Us