Sunday 23 December 2012

Good Wishes

Yesterday I hadn't prepared a Christmas post,so I quickly went outside and took this photo of the front door. It wasn't snowing, but I added the not very convincing snow flakes just for fun:) I want to thank all of you who regularly visit my blog, and give you my warmest best wishes. Although I have already visited many of your blogs to wish you a Merry Christmas, and many of you have passed by to wish me the same, I still want to be sure that I have not left anyone out, so Merry Christmas everyone, and a very Happy New Year to you and your families. See you all in 2013.

Wednesday 19 December 2012

Eagle Eyed

The Short- toed Snake Eagle
Circaetus gallicus

The Short-toed Snake Eagle is a medium bird of prey. It can be found in open cultivated plains and deciduous scrub areas. As it's name implies, it's diet consists mainly of snakes and other reptiles, mostly lizards.

Monday 10 December 2012

In It's Element

The Marsh Frog
Pelophylax ridibundus


Taking a leap to the bottom of the pond using it's long hind legs

Breeding takes place in March and April

The smaller male holds on tightly to the larger female whilst mating
The Marsh Frog has a large head, and it's eyes are on top of it's head. When swimming it can remain submerged whilst looking for prey, and keeping safe from predators .

The lighter green back stripe is clearly visible on this photo

The Marsh frog is Europe's largest water dwelling frog, and a powerful swimmer. It is also an amazing jumper,and always ready to jump into deep water at the first sign of a disturbance sprinting with it's long back legs. It is green in colour although there is a large variation in colour pattern, ranging from dark green to brown or grey. A lighter green line on the back is generally present. The female grows to 17 cm in length but the male is much smaller. The diet of the Marsh Frog consists of dragonflies and small invertebrates.

A Charmer

The Coal Tit

Saturday 1 December 2012

Tufty Ears and Bushy Tails

The Red Squirrel





They come in all shapes and sizes.Some are chubby and in certain positions I think they look more like little bears than squirrels, and others are slender. Some are red like these, and others are light or dark brown,and can be even black in colour. Their striking ear tufts are a prominent distinguishing feature of the Red Squirrel in Winter, but they lose them in Summer. Their bushy tails vary in volume, but are usually 15-20 cm in length.They are daily visiters to the garden and give me endless pleasure.

Wednesday 21 November 2012


One evening about three years ago I came across this unfamiliar sight. I stood there in disbelief as I took this photo with a small digital camera, because it was something I had never seen before, or since for that matter. It gave me quite a start, as it was so alien looking. Could it be some sort of reproductive process, or something more sinister!! Any ideas fellow bloggers, what is happening here?

Saturday 17 November 2012

Pastoral Picture

Sheep and Lambs
The Cork Trees have recently been stripped of their bark
This is a familiar sight for me as it's just outside our gate, but I could'nt decide which photo to post, so chose these three.

Saturday 10 November 2012

Mouse Moment

The Wood Mouse 
Apodemus sylvaticus

The Wood Mouse is largely nocturnal.It has a pointed snout and the ears are very large.

The Wood Mouse eats a long list of things, including fungi, worms, insects, fruits and seeds.


Friday 19 October 2012

Leaves for Leontien

Sending Leontien my heart felt best wishes for her continual recovery.

Wednesday 17 October 2012

Woodland Woodpecker

The Great Spotted Woodpecker
The Great Spotted Woodpecker has a black head, and a black bar separates the white patch on the neck.
This is the first time I have ever seen a Woodpecker feeding with any bird.The conspicuous red rump always gets my attention, and I grap my camera and take the photos through the patio window, but the quality is poor.  
The Juvenile has red crown
The peanuts lure the Woodpeckers to my garden, but the swinging motion on the feeder, is a bit of a problem!!
I will be taking a short break as from next week.

Tuesday 9 October 2012

Pretty Pigeons

The Pigeon
I don't know what variety of pigeon these pigeons are, but they are very pretty, so I decided to post them anyway.

Wednesday 3 October 2012

Blue Bijou

Lang's Short.Tailed Bue
Leptotes pirithous (Lycaenidae)
Lang's Short.tailed Bue Butterfly rarely reveals it's upper wings, which are mainly in the male, and more brown in the female. The barred underwings are marked by two colourful eyespots, and a long tail.It favours flower rich grassland.
The Lang's Short.tailed Blue is a powerful flier, and strong migrant.It's migrantory habits allow it to reach almost anywhere
within it's range.Common and widespread in the south of it's range, scarce further north.I have seen hundreds here this year.

Monday 24 September 2012

Hovering 2

The Hummingbird Halk-moth

Tuesday 18 September 2012


A Juvenile Robin

Saturday 15 September 2012


Just recently, I was very kindly honoured in being nominated for the LIEBSTER BLOG AWARD, by Jerry, from The Great Outdoors , a great nature blog and the VERSATILE BLOGGER AWARD by Fallar from Las Mira, another very interesting nature blog. I am extremely grateful and thank them both for thinking of me, but will not be accepting them or any other future awards.

After much thought, I have decided it will be this blog's policy not to accept any awards seeing as most of them entail passing them on, and not wanting to discriminate between fellow bloggers and all the fantastic blogs I follow, I feel this is, for me, the best option.

Many thanks again to Jerry and Fallar, and for those of you who don't yet know their blogs, I can tell you they are well worth a visit.

Saturday 8 September 2012

The Water Babes

The Nymph of the Damselfly
At the beginning of summer the nymph leaves the water to begin it's metamorphasis.
The nymth climbs up a reed, the skin splits down it's back and the Damselfly emerges.
I have never been fortunate enough to actually witness this transformation,but thought I
would show the nymth-.cuticle, which eventually dries in the sun and falls in the water.

Sunday 2 September 2012

Dainty Demoiselles

Male Damselfly Arigon Virgo

Female Damselfly-Agrion Virgo

Monday 16 July 2012

The New Arrival

Local breed of cow from the north of Portugal ( Minhotes)
Dear fellow bloggers, as you probably know my first love is painting, and just recently I have been offered a couple of portrait commissions. Untill they are compleated I will be taking a blogging break.I should be back in August.

Saturday 14 July 2012


The Swallowtail
Papilio machaon ( Papilionidae)
This Swallowtail has lost one of it's trademark tail streamers on the hind wing

The Scarce Swallowtail
lphiclides podalirius (Papilionidae)

The ground colour of the wings is yellowish but can look confusingly white in strong sun light as above photo shows.

Friday 6 July 2012

From The Depths

The Viperine Snake
Natrix maura
Whilst I was at the pond one day last week, this Viperine snake emerged from it's depths.This gave me an opportunity to capture these two photos before it saw me and slithered away hidden by the vegetation.My first thought was for the Newts,but although I stayed there for a while hoping to get another shot it didn't reappear.These snakes eat fish and amphibians, and grow to 70cm in length.
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