Light Colour Shade



Catching the fleeting scenes of many splendored life with a camera.
'Look closely. The beautiful may be small' — Kant

28 July 2015

Freesia fucata, Japanese honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica), Melia azedarach (white cedar, chinaberry tree, bead-tree, Cape lilac, syringa berrytree, Persian lilac) flowers

Freesia is a genus of herbaceous perennial flowering plants in the family Iridaceae. It is native to the eastern side of southern Africa, from Kenya south to South Africa.


Freesia fucata flowers. (© LightColourShade. All rights reserved)


24 June 2015

The Common Starling (Sturnus vulgaris) and Wood Pigeon (Columba palumbus).

The common starling (Sturnus vulgaris), also known as the European starling, is a passerine bird in the starling family, Sturnidae. It is about 20 cm (8 in) long and has glossy black plumage, which is speckled with white at some times of year. The legs are pink and the bill is black in winter and yellow in summer. It is a noisy bird, especially in communal roosts and other gregarious situations, with a varied song that sometimes sounds like a wolf-whistle. Its gift for mimicry has been noted in literature including the Mabinogion and the works of Pliny the Elder and William Shakespeare (hmm, that would explain the wolf-whistling). Large flocks of this species can be beneficial to agriculture by controlling invertebrate pests; however, starlings can also be pests themselves when they feed on fruit and sprouting crops.

Common starling (Sturnus vulgaris) on a twig.  (by-nc-nd)

19 June 2015

Yellowhammer (Emberiza citrinella) Female

Yellowhammer (Emberiza citronella) female in a puddle. (by-nc-nd)

18 June 2015

Iris Pseudacorus (Yellow Flag, Yellow Iris, Water Flag) Flowers

Iris pseudacorus (yellow flag, yellow iris, water flag) is a species in the genus Iris, of the family Iridaceae. It is native to Europe, western Asia and northwest Africa. The rhizome has historically been used as an herbal remedy, but when applied to the skin or inhaled, the tannin-rich juices can be acrid and irritating. Not only is yellow iris a beautiful ornamental plant, but also a form of water treatment since it has the ability to take up heavy metals through its roots.

Iris pseudacorus (yellow flag, yellow iris, water flag) flower close-up. (© LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

25 May 2015

Rabbit suite. European rabbit or common rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus)

The European rabbit or common rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) is native to south-western Europe (Spain and Portugal) and northwest Africa (Morocco and Algeria). The animal’s decline in its native range (caused by the diseases myxomatosis and rabbit calicivirus, as well as overhunting and habitat loss), has, in turn, caused the decline of its highly dependent predators, the Iberian lynx and the Spanish imperial eagle.”

European rabbit or common rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) close-up. (© LightColourShade. All rights reserved)

4 March 2015

Schlumbergera Russeliana

Schlumbergera is a small genus of cacti (although they don’t really look like common cacti) with six species found in the coastal mountains of south-eastern Brazil. Plants grow on trees or rocks in habitats which are generally relatively cool, shady and of high humidity.

Schlumbergera russeliana flower. (© LightColourShade. All rights reserved) 

9 February 2015

Homing pigeon (Columba livia domestica), Common Blackbird (Turdus merula), Eurasian Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus), Common Wood Pigeon (Columba palumbus), Common Pochard (Aythya ferina), and Great Cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo)

Homing pigeon is a variety of domestic pigeon (Columba livia domestica) derived from the rock pigeon, selectively bred to find its way home over extremely long distances (up to 1,800 km). The wild rock pigeon has an innate homing ability, meaning that it will generally return to its nest and mate. Their average flying speed over moderate distances is around 80 km/h (50 miles per hour) but speeds of up to 140 km/h (90 miles per hour) have been observed in top racers for short distances. Homing pigeons are called messenger or carrier pigeons when they are used to carry messages. Pigeons can find their way back from distant places they have never visited before. Most researchers believe that homing ability is based on a "map and compass" model, with the compass feature allowing birds to orient and the map feature allowing birds to determine their location relative to a goal site (home loft). While the compass mechanism appears to rely on the sun, some researchers believe that the map mechanism relies on the ability of birds to detect the Earth's magnetic field. Scientists discovered on top of pigeon's beak large number of particles of iron which remain aligned to north like manmade compass, thus it acts as compass which helps pigeon in determining its home, and it looks like the trigeminal nerve plays a role in magnetoception, too. Some studies showed that pigeons also orient themselves using the spatial distribution of atmospheric odours, known as olfactory navigation, as well as low frequency infrasound. In areas they have previously visited, pigeons are probably guided by visual landmarks, such as roads and other man-made features, just like humans. However, various experiments suggest that different breeds of homing pigeons rely on different cues to different extents.

Homing pigeon (Columba livia domestica) portrait. (© LightColourShade. All rights reserved)
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