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Tuesday 29 August 2017

Its Blackberry Time

Starlings are connoisseurs of berries of various kinds and don't mind the occasional blackberry.
Did I say 'Occasional', I watched a flock through tall bushes and they probably eat their own weight in the berries or more just while I was there.
Unusually they were easy to spook and would move off to another bush, so I had to be careful to get these shots.

Thursday 24 August 2017

Swallows Lunch Time

The Swallow that visits the UK each year (thats Hirunda rustic) for reference, arrives in April having flown all the way from Southern Africa. This includes crossing the Sahara dessert on the way, a spectacular journey for such a small vulnerable looking creature.
Invariably they return to the exact location each year to build their nests. They can rear 2 to 3 broods whilst here. As busy parents the adults spend all of their time flying low over fields catching flies etc to feed the young.

You can see two immature birds below having left the nest waiting for food to be delivered by the parents. 
The first one is somewhat older or more advanced than the second.

Feeding by the parents is quite an art and involves low and very accurate flying.
You can see a number of sequences below that I shot this week of this activity.

Once the immature have grown sufficiently they are able to fly and catch food themselves.
Towards the end of September and into October they start to flock together perching on trees, cables bridges etc ready for the off. They move to the South of the country and then begin the long journey to South Africa.

Sunday 20 August 2017

A Wet Woodland Walk

A cloudy and often wet woodland walk with strong winds which was hardly conducive to much in the way of nature observation. 
The winds and dull weather made it difficult to find butterflies and only the occasional bright spell made it possible for the current available species to venture out. Birds, apart from a small flock of immature Goldfinch feeding on thistles in the distance, was non existant.

The first image below was about as good as it got in respect of the weather.

The fruits of Autumn are visible everywhere now like the Haw and Hip berries below.

The most obliging of the butterfly species to venture out was the female and male Brimstone below.

Can you spot the Spider below.

More fruits below, the Sloe fruits and Blackberries.

Some signs of Autumn noticed here as these Hawthorn leaves are starting to change.


Wild Mint.

At last, something colourful to shoot. A Red Admiral.

Musk Mallow.

There is a theme developing you may have noticed, I have used a few of the Art filters on my Olympus E-M1. You can tell that there is not much around at the moment due to the weather and time restraints on my part, as I have resulted to such things.
This one below, you just point at a subject and press the shutter and you get five shots of the subject in a row.

I think this is Fragrant Agrimony below.

An Azure Blue damselfly put in a brief appearance.

A brief shot of a Large White was all that I could get before it made off.

A subject that was not running away quite so quickly, this John Deere tractor and drag harrows.
At least the wind wasn't going  to blow that around. :)