Friday, 5 July 2013

A young Robin was enjoying the warm sunlight on this beautiful day.

The two Coot chicks at Peter Pan are now out of the nest and swimming around to be fed by their mother, but their wise parents are keeping them close to the nest in case of raids.

The Mallard is a much less careful parent, swimming around all over the lake with her brood. But she has not lost any ducklings since yesterday, and there are still eight.

This can be attributed to the low numbers of big gulls on the lake -- just a handful of Lesser Black-Backs and a couple of Herring Gulls at the moment. At least some of the regular Herring Gulls that visit the park are from the breeding colony around Paddington Station, and these will now be attending to their chicks in their rooftop nests. Herring Gulls are skilled scavengers and don't have to fly all the way to the park for food. Everywhere -- waste bins, the backs of restaurants, the fish stall in Church Street Market -- provides a wealth of opportunity.

Although many of the big gulls are migrants, there has not been a single month since I started counting birds in 2004 when I haven't recorded at least a few Herring Gulls and Lesser Black-Backs in my monthly total.

No Tawny Owls were visible, and rather surprisingly neither was the Little Owl, although I was expecting him to be sunbathing on his usual branch and visited the tree three times. I haven't seen him for several days, and think he may have switched to a perch in the tall lime tree next to their nest tree, in which he is completely invisible from below.

After at least of week of silence, the Blackbirds started singing again yesterday and have continued today. Normally they stop singing around the beginning of July, but this is a strange year.

This dragonfly is a Black-Tailed Skimmer, Orthetrum cancellatum.

It was hunting insects over one of the ponds in the Italian Garden, which are at the moment a productive spot because they have algae floating on the surface and the fountains have been out of order for several days.

No comments:

Post a Comment