I spend a lot of time at Jackson's Coppice, a small area of ancient woodland outside Sugnall in Shropshire. There is a great variety of wildlife here and an area of marshland further down the road both of which are great for birdsong. When the wind is up, the woodland takes on a different quality, occasionally intimidating and ominous with creaks and cracks sounding from the further reaches and the odd sense of not being alone. The falling beechnuts were captured with a pair of DPA 4060s clipped to available twigs though the hoverflies were captured using a DIY pair of EM172s - I love these tiny mics,ncredibly sensitive and with fantastic range and all for under fifty quid if you're handy with a soldering iron. They use plug-in-power and make for fine recordings on small recorders, I used an Olympus LS12 for some of these.
Until quite recently I was recording with a Zoom F8 which is a really versatlie and quite sophisticated portable multitrack recorder. The preamps are super quiet but still not as quiet as anything from Sound Devices so I was using an SD302 mixer for the preamps. It was all getting far too heavy and with too many connecting wires and battery packs so I'v recently combined everything into one and use the new Sound Devices MixPre 6. Pretty much everything I coud ask for and absolutely tiny. My shoulder is much happier as a result.
The various tree recordings are contact mics on tress moving in the wind with the better results coming from those trees that have some dead branches to attach contact mics to, this seems to offer a pitched resonant backdrop. Helicopters are a bane in this area but I like the fact that after they have passed the background sound emerges once again, like nothing really happened, in this case it's the sound of those ever inquisitive hoverflies still there.