Wednesday, September 2, 2015

End of Summer

I always find it a bit crazy that there are two different ways of timing the beginnings and ends of the seasons. Meteorologically speaking Autumn started on the 1st September but astronomically speaking the change varies slightly from year to year as it takes the Earth 365 days 5 hours and 49 minutes to travel round the Sun.  The astronomical change is on 22 / 23 September.

Whichever you choose to follow this three photo stitched panorama was taken  a week or so ago of a Summer blue sky and clouds over a corn field:

Clouds pano

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Unknown Pond Life

Time to dust off the microscope and see what I can see.
This creature reminds me of a fresh water shrimp but I don't think it is:

Unknown Pond Life

So far it doesn't match anything in the references I have.
The nearest I've got - it looks to be an amphipod. It may have been damaged when I sucked up some water from the pond in a small syringe. The large end of the creature should be the head end.

Monday, August 31, 2015

Monday Mystery - Guess What



My congratulations and the virtual Midmarsh Gold Star go to Glo and Adrian who recognised the chestnut seed case, from a local Horse Chestnut tree which shed a whole bunch of them in recent strong winds.

 DSCN5195    DSCN5191

This week it is  small part of my latest 'toy'
Ignore the dark reflection of the camera.
Guess What:

Please leave any guesses in the comments.
They will be revealed, along with the answer, next Monday.

No prizes but possibly a virtual Midmarsh Gold or Silver Star.

Saturday, August 29, 2015

A Surprise Visit

Not long ago I was bemoaning the lack of visits by Long Tailed Tits so it was a really pleasant surprise when a small group suddenly appeared at the feeders. For once the camera was already set up:



 I think this is the first time I have seen them mix with other birds and the Blue Tits seemed to keep staring at them as if they couldn't work out what these Humpty Dumpties with long tails were:


Even the House Sparrow seemed to be saying, 'Who invited you to tea?":


As usual they only stayed a short while before moving on as a group.


I hope they don't leave it so long before their next visit.

Pony and Trap with Trailer

On our afternoon walk round the block I spotted a pony and trap in the distance:


As they grew nearer I could see it had an added trailer:



The driver stopped opposite us and we had a short chat.
The trap is original and he had made the trailer. It was its first outing:



The girls and Jack Russell looked really happy, thoroughly enjoying their trip out to the corner shop for ice creams:


It was good to see that passing drivers were being considerate and moving slowly giving the pony a wide berth. Also the pony was obviously used to traffic.

I was invited to have a ride. An offer I would have taken up if Penny had been at home but I wasn't sure how she would react being so close to a horse, or the Jack Russell.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday at the Flicks - Blue & Great Tits + Clouds


Blue and Great Tits are often seen eating from the bottom of the peanut feeders:

Another Toshiba X-Sports timelapse of clouds:

Toshiba Camileo X-Sports, 1 photo every 5 seconds. Total 1056 photos before the battery ran out. Processed as a video using free Mac app Zeitraffer then in the free version of Video Pad.   Soundtrack - royalty free music 'All Fall Down' from Purple Planet.

Have a great weekend observing all aspects of nature around you.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Coal Tit

I had removed the mixed seed feeder once there was enough natural food for the birds. Also it prevented the hoards of Starlings being able to scatter the seed all over the place. I put it back up on Tuesday and it wasn't long before it was in use. One of the first to arrive was a Coal Tit, the smallest of the tit family:



As it was visiting very frequently I imagine it was taking sunflower hearts to hide for later in the year. I have often watched them taking sunflower seeds and hiding them in cracks in old tree stumps or in the bark of trees.
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