Tuesday, 18 June 2013

There was a good deal of fighting today. For no reason I could see, four Carrion Crows had a noisy brawl next to the leaf yard. Maybe they were just bored.

I gave them all peanuts and they forgot their quarrel at once.

There was a more complicated dispute in the water near Peter Pan. There is a Coots' nest on a post just offshore, and the male Coot defends his territory aggressively. The female Mute Swan who nested on the Long Water, and who has recently lost two of her four cygnets, probably to a fox, brought the surviving two closer to the Coots' nest than the Coot liked. While he was cruising about menacingly with raised wings, a Grey Heron waded in from the other side. This caused the Coot to lose his temper completely and he charged the heron, bouncing off its chest and falling back into the water, which is the moment you can see in this picture. Meanwhile, the swan was hissing furiously at both of them.

After this collision, they all retired to what they considered a safe distance. But the Grey Heron perched on a post too close to the female Common Tern, and her mate made several menacing passes over the heron's head until it gave up and flew right away.

The discord continues in this series of small pictures. Beside the Serpentine, a pair of Carrion Crows were cooperating in ripping a hole in a rubbish bag and removing the contents. They were happy to find some sandwiches.

But they also dislodged an apple, and a Greylag Goose started eating it.

It was challenged by a Herring Gull, but chased it off.

However, in the confusion a Coot saw its chance ...

... and carried off the apple. These persistent birds always win in the end.

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