On the Feeder

A couple of quick shots tonight of a young great tit enjoying one of the bird feeders at work.

young great tit

young great tit

Plus another youngster. This time a young rat peering out of one of the rat holes that pepper the fringes of Falmer pond.

Young brown rat in rat hole.

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D and EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens.

Heron plus Rat in the Woods

Odd weather we’re having. It’s much cooler than it is supposed to be at this time of year, but the sun was out this morning and I arrived at falmer Pond just in time to see the local heron landing gracefully on the island tree.

grey heron

grey heron

grey heron

I was keeping my eyes open for rats scurrying around the fringes of the pond, and I thought I’d spotted one on the far side but it turned out to be a squirrel which had ventured down to the edge of the water for an early morning drink.

squirrel

The rats did, however, show up at lunchtime. Not in their usual waterside runs, but foraging in the wooded area behind the pond. I watched for several minutes as it dug for roots and seeds in the soft earth, but it was eventually scared away by an elderly dog-walker.

Rats

Rats

Rats

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D and EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens.

Back to the Pond

After a couple of weeks away from the pond, I was back there this morning and so were most of the usual gang. It didn’t take me long to find the local heron, hiding away under the trees on the wooded bank.

grey heron

The greylags were there as well. This one enjoying a good splash (as were many of the birds). It’s a ritual that is extensive as the juveniles lose their downy feathers and adults complete their moult. The splashing serves a useful function of cleaning the new feathers of dust and mites.

greylag goose

There were ducks (of course). This one was paddling in my favourite corner of the pond.

duck

I was surprised (but pleased) to see that there were even some late-season ducklings swimming about.

ducklingd

The gulls were there as well. These two young herring gulls were harassing the adult for food… with some success.

herring gulls feeding

British Coastal Birds

Up on dry land, the rabbits were in lively mood.

rabbits

I even saw a rat ;)

rat

I’m still working on the gull special I mentioned a little while ago. It’s grown somewhat but it will get posted soon (within the next couple of weeks).

Precious few fox sightings lately, though the trail camera is picking up their nightly activity (plus a badger or two). The cast of characters is changing. The nicked ear fox has barely featured in recent footage, but there’s a young fox (this year’s brood) and an older fox with a stump for a brush who we saw several months ago but has reappeared after a lengthy absence.

More soon…

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D and EF 400mm f/5.6L USM lens.