Saturday, 22 February 2014

No sign of the male Tawny Owl today, and he hasn't been seen since Thursday. He may be inside the nest tree, or he may have found another tree to sit in and we haven't been able to spot him. But it is always like this when it gets near the time for the owlets to emerge, which is maybe three weeks from now. The male owl becomes more erratic in his habits, and people start worrying pointlessly. And then, when the owlets are due, there is a frantic hunt until they are found by chance, in recent years several hundred yards from the nest tree.

The only activity I saw on the owls' nest tree was a pair of Ring-Necked Parakeets courting. The female was clearly enjoying the attention.

The Grey Herons really do seem to have abandoned their attempt at nesting. There was an Egyptian Goose in one of their half-finished nests, and a heron stood on the shore completely indifferent to the intruder.

The Egyptian would not have been trying to use the nest for itself. It was just indulging its habit of standing around in trees, which these birds do all winter long before they think of nesting.

The Coot nest offshore from Peter Pan is now definitely established, and has been occupied every time I have gone past it.

All four Jackdaws were flying around near the Speke obelisk. There is a lively rivalry between the Carrion Crows, Magpies and Jackdaws in this area, and at one point the Jackdaws attacked a solitary Magpie and chased it away.

Both Little Grebes came past the Italian Garden, though I only managed to see one of them on a second visit. They are constantly moving around the edge of the lake and you have to be lucky to catch one in a visible place.

Update: Elizabeth saw the Tawny Owl at 5.30 pm in his usual place. So he was just spending the day indoors.


  1. I made a unsuccessful trip to see the owl yesterday but was rewarded by the sight of a Green Woodpecker exploring a nearby tree trunk

    1. The Tawny Owl is now definitely coming out later than in past weeks. Just before sunset is the best time, and on a reasonably bright day this spot is well enough lit for a good picture.