Tag Archives: aircraft

Invaders!

Well not really, but I was trying to link three very different photos for today’s blog. The first ‘invader’ was a surprise sighting yesterday of a Soviet warplane (World War II vintage) flying near Falmer. It’s a Yakovlev Yak-3 fighter, i.d. number D-FLAK and dates back to 1944. I know very little about these planes, but by all accounts they were sensational fighters and as influential as the Spitfire. More here.

Yakovlev Yak-3 D-FLAK at Falmer, East Sussex

Yakovlev Yak-3 D-FLAK at Falmer, East Sussex

Now the next subject might not generally be thought of as an invader, and to be fair there have been sheep in England for several thousand years. But they are not true natives, with some suggestion of neolithic farmers introducing sheep, and a much greater influence being played by the Romans who effectively established sheep farming in Britain. I took these two shots at Seven Sisters. A fine looking animal.

Sheep at Seven Sisters, East Sussex

Sheep at Seven Sisters, East Sussex

Sheep at Seven Sisters, East Sussex

Sheep at Seven Sisters, East Sussex

The final invader is a true invasive species. It’s the terrapin and my excuse for another photo of them is that this one shows three of them together at the edge of Falmer Pond. The shot was taken through undergrowth. Any attempt to get closer would have (and in fact, did) result in two of them sliding into the water for safety.

Three terrapins at Falmer Pond, East Sussex

Three terrapins at Falmer Pond, East Sussex

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 200mm f/2.8L II USM lens.

Posted in Aircraft, Sheep, terrapin Also tagged , , |

Collared Dove and other flight shots

The main sequence today is a collared dove, flying low over Falmer Pond this morning. I’d been hoping for more photos of swallows, swifts and house martins, but sometimes you have to take what you can get. And I was quite pleased to take these 😉

collared dove

collared dove

collared dove

The first of the other flight shots in the title is a fairly standard photo of starlings. It’s hard to be sure, but I don’t think I’ve seen as many this year as in previous years. Overall, their numbers are in decline, but local variations can mask the true situation. Anyway, just a quite nice image of them flying overhead in a small group.

Flock of starlings

The final shot is one of those that I’m always looking for but very rarely do all the elements fall into place. It was taken against a blue sky, but I’ve converted it to black and white.

Aircraft crossing the moon

Aircraft crossing the moon

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

Posted in Birds, Moon Also tagged , , |

A Day of Surprises

As everyone who reads this blog will know, I visit Falmer Pond very frequently and so there’s generally very little that occurs that that comes in the category of a surprise. There are the regular ducks and gulls and geese, and the more or less occasional visits by herons, egrets, sandpipers and cormorants. Today though there a pair of birds did catch me by surprise. I presume they have flown in, but the village pond being what it is I suppose they could have walked over from a neighbouring farm, or even been ‘released’ at the pond from captivity or rescue. I really don’t know. Anyway, whatever I do expect to see at the pond, I really wasn’t expecting this beautiful pair of Muscovy ducks.

Male and female feral Muscovy ducks standing at the edge of Falmer Pond East Sussex

Female feral Muscovy duck on the fringe of Falmer Pond, East Sussex

Male feral Muscovy duck at Falmer Pond East Sussex

They were very placid, and spent most of the time standing calmly at the edge of the pond watching the world go by. And the world in this case includes a World War 2 German aircraft! This flew over at lunchtime. It’s actually a Gomhouria Mk 6, made up in Luftwaffe livery.

Bücker Bü 181 - generic. This is a Gomhouria Mk 6. Training plane for Luftwaffe

There was one more surprise waiting for me when I arrived home. Young foxes start life by being fed, and gradually learn to scavenge. At around this age (just over five months) they develop their hunting skills. I came home to find the evidence of their first ‘kill’. I knew it was dead because it had flies on it. 😉

Prey left by young fox in suburban garden

And here’s one of the villains of the piece.

5 month old fox cub (Vulpes vulpes) stalking through grass in a suburban garden
Camera note: all shots taken with the Canon 7D and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens.

Posted in Wildlife Also tagged , , |