Tag Archives: speckled wood

Some Small Delights

This is a bit of a mixed bag of photos,some taken over the weekend at home, and others at Falmer. I’ll start in the garden with a photo of two bees enjoying some wild marjoram that has invaded our ‘lawn’ (it’s more of tiny meadow right now!).

Bees on wild marjoram

Bees on wild marjoram

Just alongside from there we have an old prefabricated pond. The newts like it, but it is being slightly overgrown by blackberry. The fruits are ripening and will serve birds or foxes well.

Ripening blackberries

Ripening blackberries

Now for the photos from Falmer. The first was unexpected, and was pointed out to me by a workman from the local farm. A kestrel had found a temporary perch at the rear of St Laurence Church.

Kestrel at St Laurence Church, Falmer

Kestrel at St Laurence Church, Falmer

The second is a bird I’ve been trying to photograph for a week or so, with little success. It’s a common sandpiper. They are highly prone to zip off into the distance, but this was just sufficiently in range and nicely perched on a floating branch in the middle of the pond.

Common sandpiper perched on a branch in Falmer Pond

Common sandpiper perched on a branch in Falmer Pond

There’s a treelined area (not quite a wood) along the southern fringe of the pond which provides a good habitat for the speckled wood butterfly. They enjoy the shade. This one is sharing a leaf with a greenbottle.

Speckled wood butterfly and greenbottle.

Speckled wood butterfly and greenbottle.

The last shot was taken over the fields at the western end of the pond. It’s not perfect, but capturing swallows in flight over uneven ground isn’t easy. Most of my efforts were badly out of focus, but this one just about works.

Swallow in flight over fields at Falmer

Swallow in flight over fields at Falmer

Camera note: all shots taken with the Canon 7D Mark II and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS Mark II lens.

Posted in Bee, Birds, Butterfly, Insects, Plants, water birds Also tagged , , , |

Fox and Badger Video

This is a bit of a mixed bag. I spent most of my free time looking for small woodland birds. I could hear them, but getting a clear line of sight proved somewhat more difficult. I had better luck with the speckled wood butterflies which were out in number.

Speckled wood butterfly

This is a view of the woodland path I was following. It’s very pretty and runs adjacent to the fields where I was photographing buzzards yesterday.

woodland path

I made a very brief visit to the pond at Falmer Village to check up on the moorhen chicks. They’re doing fine. 😀

Moorhen chick and adult

Back home the garden is lively at night with foxes and badgers. I’ve even managed a couple of direct sightings of the bolder of the still shy pack. This is from last night.

fox

The trail camera is doing rather better than me at the moment and there are some nice behavioural interactions among these clips of foxes and badgers taken over the past two nights.

I’ll close with the moon from this evening. It’s just a few hour past full and was still quite low in the sky when I took this.

moon

Camera note: all photos taken with the Canon 7D and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens.

Posted in Badger, Behaviour, Butterfly, Foxes, Landscape, Moon, South Downs National Park, water birds Also tagged , , , , , , , |

Some Garden Colour

A bit of a lazy day today, just pottering in the garden and catching up with things. It’s quiet here. The farmers are working the fields across the valley, and the drone of the machinery just adds to the sense of summer slowly coming to a close.

Farming scene

The butterflies are enjoying the long warm summer. We’ve had more in the garden than I can remember for many years, and a good variety too. There are the tiny blues that flit low over the grass and occasionally land on the lavender.

Common blue butterfly

Common blue butterfly

There’s the small tortoiseshell butterfly, and the speckled wood (which prefers the more shaded parts of the garden).

Small tortoiseshell butterfly

Speckled wood butterfly

And the vividly coloured peacock butterfly, here appropriately resting on the buddleia (also known as the butterfly bush).

Butterfly

Lastly, one stray among the butterflies, a migrant hawker dragonfly; one of several that have been seen in the garden recently.

Migrant hawker dragonfly

Migrant hawker dragonfly

The foxes are still around (I’ve just spotted ‘Nicked Ear’ lurking at the back of the garden), and we are still getting occasional visits from local badgers (evidenced by the trail cam footage, which I’ve yet to edit).

Camera note: all shots taken with the Canon 7D and EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L USM IS lens.

Posted in Butterfly, Insects Also tagged , , , , |