Saturday, 10 May 2014

Swifts and House Martins were hunting over the Serpentine. There were more martins than usual and I think that some of them were Sand Martins, though it was hard to tell as they dashed overhead in the rain. Sand Martins are slightly smaller than House Martins, and lighter brown on the upperparts. They lack the white rump path of a House Martin but have a dark bar across the upper chest. I didn't get any conclusive pictures of one, though I did manage to get a shot of a House Martin.

You can see the raindrops in the shadow of its wings.

The cygnets were on the nest in the reeds with their mother while the male Mute Swan was feeding on the edge of the lake. He came to the nest and two of the cygnets, seeing him, went into the water.

Then the whole family took to the lake and went off to look for people who would feed them.

One of the parents from the Robin family at the east end of the Serpentine was taking a break from feeding duty and having a bath on the edge of the waterfall in the Dell.

A Canada gosling was sleeping peacefully on its mother's back. She was dozing off herself, while her mate kept a lookout for danger.

In any group of geese, large or small, there is always one keeping watch, standing tall to see farther.

Today's bird photographed against pretty pink blossom is a Great Tit, waiting impatiently for me to produce some food.

Their bright yellow underside matches the upper surface of a sunlit leaf, and their greenish-brown back matches the lower surface, a nice example of counter-colouring that helps to camouflage them.

The lamp post at the Lido with the Blue Tits' nest in it is now emitting chirping sounds as the growing nestlings clamour for food. The plane tree near the boat houses with the Starlings' nest is also noisy. I held up my camera at arms' length to try to look into this nest, but could see nothing but wood.

There was no sign of any of the owls. No one has seen the Tawny Owl for a week now, and he may have found somewhere else to spend the day.

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