Strolling through light woodland on a sunny spring afternoon I suddenly become aware of a slight movement midway up the trunk of an oak.

Looking closer I spot a rather mouse-like creature hopping somewhat furtively along with jerky movements as it climbs the tree trunk.

However, it is no mouse but a tiny bird named most appropriately a treecreeper ( pictured) Superbly camouflaged with dull mottled buff and brown plumage, it has a long thin downward curving beak with which it picks off insects from the bark.

The treecreeper's underside is pure white that reflects light onto the bark to highlight any insects lurking there.

The tail feathers are stiffened and act as a prop to stabilise the bird as it sits on the tree.

Treecreepers begin searching for prey at the base of a tree then upon reaching the top, fly down to begin their ascent all over again or fly to an adjacent tree.

Very secretive, nests are placed out of sight behind slivers of loose bark or in large cracks where up to nine eggs may be laid and there are usually two broods each year.

During winter, treecreepers often join parties of great, blue and long-tailed tits foraging as more pairs of eyes are more likely to locate food and also keep a watch out for predators.