You can tell that the weather is warming up. The ants get busy and then along comes this great little guy….

European Green Woodpecker

This very smart bird is a European Green Woodpecker, Picus viridis

He and his pals visit our front garden fairly frequently since we seem to have more than our fair share of ant nests.  This member of the woodpecker family spends much of its time feeding on ants, on the ground. Unlike other species of woodpecker, he does not often ‘drum’ on trees.

They are supposed to be a shy bird but I have found them to be fairly tolerant so long as you don’t make any sudden moves. When they fly away they usually do so whilst emitting their very loud and distinctive call.

Green Woodpecker (Picus viridis)

A frequent visitor to the lawns, around our gite in Serandon, was the Green Woodpecker.

A beautiful looking bird, usually arriving in pairs, very alert and very quick to take flight at the slightest noise or movement.

View From The Conservatory

Now I know what is causing those holes !!

Picus viridis – Green Woodpecker, the largest of the three woodpeckers that breed in Britain

I had noticed several holes around the garden. Now I have caught the culprit, in the act.

Does he look contrite ? I don’t think so.

Picus viridis – Green Woodpecker, the largest of the three woodpeckers that breed in Britain

Sorry about the picture quality. I had everything going against me. Time, shooting position, through double glazing with reflections etc. etc. I didn’t dare move to a position where I could brace myself. I had already spooked him once as I moved closer to the window.

As it happens, I only had a few seconds after this last shot. The neighbours cat came skulking round the corner and sent the pecker zipping over the fence. All that was left was his laughing call of derision.

I’m not sure if it was aimed at me or the cat.

View From The Conservatory

I haven’t posted from the conservatory for a while. But here are three items to make up for it.

The first is a shot of a Red Admiral, a typical summer visitor who was making the most of our Buddleia or Butterfly Bush. At least in this case it was living up to its name. Most years we have hundreds of flowers but the butterflies don’t come until the flowers have turned brown.

Red Admiral - Vanessa Atalanta
Red Admiral – Vanessa Atalanta

The next is of a Green Woodpecker. Not such a regular visitor to our garden but a welcome one all the same. We do see them in the area and this is the second time in recent months. This was taken through the double glazing so I consider this a lucky shot considering that I had the 300mm lens on as well which makes it a bit more difficult to keep the camera stable.

Green Woodpecker - Picus Viridis
Green Woodpecker – Picus Viridis

And finally a bit of humour. I was just mowing the lawn and popped indoors for a cuppa tea. When I cam back out my mower had all but disappeared. I blame it on this mixed up summer weather that we have had this year.

I only popped indoors for a cuppa
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