Monday, 27 May 2013

Spindle tree flowers

Found my first Spindle tree today. Strange tiny green flowers which turn into pink fruits with orange seeds later on in the year. 



Thursday, 23 May 2013

The May bug

I found this Cockchafer chappie struggling around outside. They're surprisingly large. I have to resist the urge to squeal when the hooks on the end of their legs catch hold of the skin on my fingers - it just feels like they're not going to let go, ever. Despite that I do like them, they are very handsome.


Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Looking underneath

Started peering into the quiet green world underneath leaves today. Quite a range of things to be found, especially by the river. Even if I'm not quite sure what they all are they're still interesting.

A mayfly…


…and a Hilara chorica (I think)



Monday, 20 May 2013

Looking closer

I enjoy looking in detail at growing things, especially at this time of year when so much is happening. By June leaves have been gnawed at by caterpillars. By July plants are already going to seed or shrivelling in the heat of summer (OK, possibly) and by August it is all over, the trees and plants have taken on an old green colour. But now everything is new, 
vibrant and perfect. 
Get Out! Take a closer look.

New needles on an evergreen tree.

A cuckoo flower.

Close up of stamens on ornamental cherry blossom.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Greenfly

Amazing crowd of aphids on just one, small leaf. They're all clustered close to the main 
veins on the underside of this Norway Maple leaf. 






Thursday, 16 May 2013

Bluebell wood

Now is the perfect time to see bluebells. They create a magical blue haze on the forest floor. They do not last long, but the memory of them stays forever.







Monday, 13 May 2013

British Wildlife Centre

We had an excellent morning taking photographs at the Wildlife Centre. I've been three times now and every time you go there is something different to see. The beautiful red squirrels were expecting breakfast so they were active. They are smaller than hefty grey squirrels and twice as fast. Very hard to get a good photograph.


Friday, 10 May 2013

Otters

Went to the Barnes Wetland Centre today. Excellent fun. Many, MANY ducks of various shapes and sizes. And three very cheeky otters.







Thursday, 9 May 2013

Shiny


Went pond dipping in the sunshine. What better way to spend an afternoon. 
Especially if you've got the help of some boys who don't mind putting their hands 
into water you can't see the bottom of. 


Tuesday, 7 May 2013

The Wasp's Nest

Small and perfectly formed, unfortunately not in the right place, so we had to remove it. Hard to photograph - but you can just make out the start of the honeycomb shaped structure on the inside. Incredibly light, it's made of chewed up garden furniture. 


Friday, 3 May 2013

Black and Blue

Striking blue sky and the fierce pale blue-grey of the bird's eye. He was a long way up on an old tree, but still keeping a careful watch on the ground.


Wednesday, 1 May 2013

The Magpie's nest

I found some magpies building what looked like an extremely uncomfortable nest in a hawthorn tree.


 One of the birds was intent on ripping twigs of surrounding hawthorn trees rather than picking up sticks from the ground. He found it a bit of a struggle and had to try quite a few branches before he found one he could snap off.