Friday, 7 February 2014

The male Tawny Owl was being annoyed by some Jays. He drew himself up to his full height, puffed himself up and hooted.

Under the owls' tree, Charlie the Carrion Crow and his family were throwing leaves around in the hope of finding edible creatures underneath.

They are long residents here, and so are the owls, and they have stopped bothering each other. On the other hand the owls get severe heckling from Jays, Magpies and Mistle Thrushes.

Two Nuthatches came out to take nuts from the railings of the leaf yard.

One of the two Pochard--Tufted Duck hybrids was on the Long Water near Peter Pan, giving a fine view of her strange marmalade-coloured eyes. She yawned widely.

Do birds actually yawn in the same way that mammals do? If not, what does this behaviour signify?

Someone had put a lot of yellow plastic ducks into one of the ponds at the Italian Gardens. A Moorhen showed no interest whatever in them.

I would like to see what the young Herring Gull on the Serpentine would make of these objects. A hundred yards of the south shore of the Serpentine is littered with its discarded toys: sticks, stones and a plastic cup.

The Redwings are still at the lower end of the Parade Ground a short distance west of the bandstand, though today they were too distant for a picture. There were also a Mistle Thrush and plenty of Pied Wagtails.

This one was eating what looks like a wireworm, the larval stage of a click beetle, of which there are many species. They eat plant roots. The numerous Starlings in the same area are also presumably after wireworms.


  1. I wish I had been there to witness the owl hooting at its tormentors. Did you see him yourself or was it a story told by one of our fellow enthusiasts? I hope to get out for at least a very brief walk today but weather is not very promising at the moment . .

    1. That picture is of the owl in mid-hoot, as his posture shows. Compare this
      video of his larger American relative the Barred Owl.