Is that food?

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire in the 1990s with a photo of a juvenile Grey Heron. At this time of year the juveniles are wandering around exploring the area, checking out feeding locations and finding places to roost.

A local Natural History Society had a wooden hide (blind) on a reservoir in south Cheshire which is where this shot was taken from. When the water level in the reservoir was low the tree stump would appear. I’ve got quite a few species on the stump.

This juvenile Grey Heron amused me. It appeared to be trying to decide if the isolated part of the stump above the water is edible although it’s probably watching something in the water.

Is that food?

Raising steam.

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire, England in the 1980s. I visited the Crewe Steam Rally early on Sunday morning before there was many people about. The exhibitors with machinery were busy firing up the boilers or giving the brass work a final polish.

This traction engine has just had the firebox lit judging by the smoke coming out of the smokestack.

Raising steam.

 

Creepy crawlies.

This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is Creepy Crawlies.

First, let me say that I don’t regard these Common Rough Woodlice (Porcellio scaber) as creepy crawlies. The Woodlouse family is quite interesting, they’re Crustaceans, like Lobsters and Crabs, although most species live on land. They congregate in damp places to avoid drying out.

These Common Rough Woodlice were photographed in Cheshire, England in the 1980s. Rather bizarrely I remembered the scientific name for them, presumably from captioning the photos all those years ago. A couple of days ago I met someone I used to work with and I can’t remember their name.

Common Rough Woodlouse.

Big and small.

One from the archives taken in Cheshire in the 1980s. It shows two Large White Butterfly caterpillars on Nasturtium leaves.

I can’t explain the difference in size between the two unless they hatched from different groups of eggs. I had seen a female Large White Butterfly egg laying on the Nasturtium¬† plant and photographed the eggs. I later photographed the eggs hatching and the tiny caterpillars exploring the leaf they hatched on. So I’d have thought that those caterpillars would be similar sizes unless they grow at different rates.

Big and small.

Feeding on Poppy seeds.

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire in the 1980s. The juvenile Eurasian Blue Tit is feeding on a Poppy seed head.

The photo is interesting for a couple of reasons. The juvenile Blue Tit is ringed. I did some research and the closest ringing location I could find was three miles away in a straight line. Which means that this juvenile has already travelled some distance from where it was ringed. Being a juvenile it could have been ringed when it was still in the nestbox.

Also interesting is that the bird is feeding on Poppy seeds after pecking a hole in the seed head. I have seen adult Blue Tits feeding this way. So did the juvenile bird learn this behavior by watching an adult or is it instinctive behavior to peck open seed heads?

Eating Poppy seeds.

Male Common Kingfisher.

Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire, England in the early 1990s. Having posted a photo of a North American Belted Kingfisher for Wordless Wednesday I thought I would follow up with another Kingfisher species on a different continent.

This is a male Common Kingfisher that is found across parts of Eurasia and North Africa. Other common English names are Eurasian Kingfisher and River Kingfisher. The background is an out of focus hay meadow. I had a portable hide (blind) set up next to a pond in the meadow.

Male Eurasian Kingfisher.