All about Today

This is just going to be a run down of what we have been up to the last few days and some hints of what is to come. It is going to be a bit of a messy post.

First, it has been raining. The last couple of days it has been pretty much heavy rain from dawn to dusk, without any let up.

I thought that I had a new Woodpecker in the garden.

WoodpeckerI got all excited and started snapping away and then realised it is the same bird, she is just wet.

WoodpeckerIt is strange that there is no male visiting.

This is where a pair of Swallows are nesting.

5

The Swallow’s chicks have hatched. The adults have been flying out of the nest with little sacks of bird droppings in their beaks, splattering the farm yard with them. I can hear the excited little chorus of cheeps now when the adults return to the nest.

Nothing to see yet, that is still to come.

Swallow's nest

I have had Fizz living with me for a few days. Her owner had gone away and asked me to pop in and feed her twice a day. She is not allowed in my flat.

FizzWell, I couldn’t leave her alone all day. I sneaked her upstairs, it wasn’t difficult as I had the farm to myself and no-one will ever find out.

Fizz

Our walks have been pretty subdued as there was not a lot going on in the rain. More play than photography.

7

That all changed this morning when for a good few hours the sun shone.

Look at these golden fields.

Meadow ButtercupNot dandelions this time but Meadow Buttercups

Meadow ButtercupsThe Badger Track is filling up with Creeping Buttercup and so I see a Buttercup post coming up.

Here are a couple of animals that I photographed. I don’t know what either of these are but I will do very soon and then I will do little posts about them.

The first is a spider and I have been trying to get it for about a week.

Until today this was about the best shot that I had.

SpiderI got a lot of good shots when I found one out in the open today.

Unidentified Spider

Unidentified SpiderThat one is in the bag.

The second one is a fly. I haven’t got a clue what species but I got good pictures and it is very distinctive, so I should be able to sort this one out pretty soon too.

Diptera Species Diptera SpeciesThere can’t be many flies made out of marzipan.

This next fly I know well. This golden maned predator goes by the unfortunate misnomer of The Yellow Dung Fly.

He is like an old friend and so I find myself quite embarrassed to walk in on him like this.

Yellow Dung flyDo you think he looks a bit like Robert de Niro?

If you were a fly and you had to choose would you choose Robert De Niro or Rudolf Nureyev? I mean just suppose you were a fly and you had to choose.

Sicus Ferrugineus Sicus Ferrugineus Sicus FerrugineusOr..

Yellow Dung fly

(Rudolf Nureyev’s part  was played by Sicus ferrugineus a thick headed fly)

Moving on…

English Oak, Quercus robur.

English OakNow that they are in leaf these trees look magnificent  but see that little tree in the next picture, on the floor beside the Oak, that’s an Ash tree.

English Oak

The little Ash tree that stands alone in the middle of the field still hasn’t got it’s leaves on.Ash TreeSo I am trying to finish up in the fields now.

One last little flower and it is Red Clover again.

Red Clover Red CloverRed Clover is not just a good looking flower it is also good to eat. It has got to have it’s own foraging post.

22Now that’s a pretty picture but you can’t eat the Buttercups. They are poisonous, not fatal but can make you very ill and they taste foul. The worst poisons are concentrated in the yellow petals, let’s get rid of them….

Red CloverThat should be the end of this post but Fizz and I went out again in the afternoon, down the badger track this time.

24It was absolutely lovely, everything is covered in Hawthorn blossom , like confetti at a wedding.

25We were out for a reason. Treacle hunting. There were still plenty  about despite the rain.

Small Tortoiseshell LarvaThere are now five caterpillars in the Treacle-arium. I brought two small ones back with me this morning and I wasn’t going to have any more but this evening I found some really nice big specimens that I couldn’t resist and so I collected two of them as well. But that is a story for another post

Small Tortoiseshell LarvaMy hands and arms are tingling tonight from all of the playing with Stinging Nettles.

Now I have got to go and do some nature detective work so goodnight.

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