Three Spined Stickleback - Gasterosteus aculeatus, are small boney fish that are very common in the Alphin Brook and the main diet of the Kingfishers that hold territory here. Thinking it through logically, it doesn't take a lot of thought to realise how important they are in the food chain. Without the Sticklebacks there would be no Kingfishers. The water needs to be clean and able to sustain the small water fleas and planktonic crustaceans such as Daphnia that the fish feed on. The Kingfishers are top of the food chain, and are not predated by anything except perhaps, on very rare occasions, Sparrowhawks. We are surrounded by interesting wildlife everywhere we care to look, and usually in the most unobvious places. In it's own little way the Alphin Brook. typical of streams in every village, town and city in the world, has it's own ecosystem which may not be as large and dramatic as the Serengetti in Africa for example, but just as dramatic in it's own under-stated way. On the banks of the brook yesterday, I photographed two Butterfly species, deep in to October as we are, this was nice to see. We had a slight ground frost this morning so it may have been the last we say of them until next Summer. I will be checking as the day progresses.
Small Copper - Lycaena phlaeas