Tuesday, 4 November 2014

The male Tawny Owl was dozing peacefully in the sunshine on his usual place on the nest tree ...

... when he was visited by three Magpies who did their best to annoy him. One perched in front of his face and screeched at him, while he stared at it impassively ...

... and another perched on a branch above, yelling insults. He didn't even bother to turn round for that.

After a few minutes they gave up and flew away.

Lower down in the same tree, a female Ring-Necked Parakeet was squeezing herself out of a small hole. This was originally a Starlings' nest and is a very tight fit for a larger bird.

The hole is used by what appeared at first sight to be a couple, but on closer inspection they turned out to be both female so maybe they are just good friends.

The male Little Owl was having an easier time in the chestnut next to his nest tree. Three Jays flew in and didn't notice him, because he was tucked up in the leaves at the top of the tree, so a confrontation was avoided.

A Grey Heron was also dozing in the sunlight at the top of a tree near the Serpentine island, looking so much like a continuation of the trunk that I almost didn't notice it.

This Carrion Crow on the edge of the Serpentine is one of my regulars, and I gave it a piece of biscuit. A Coot strolled up and seized it from under the crow's feet. The crow didn't retaliate. I think it was just astonished.

There was a good stand of Parasol mushrooms (Macrolepiota procera) in the open grass halfway between the Serpentine Gallery and the Queen's Temple. This rather dim picture was taken in fading light just as it was coming on to rain.

I picked them and will cook them for supper. (Update: And very good they were.)


  1. Buon appetito!

  2. Hi, Just wondering about picking of mushrooms and other fungi in the Royal Parks is it actually allowed ? I know that in Richmond Park they make it clear that picking of anything, including edible fungi and chestnuts/conkers and removing from the park is prohibited. So I would of expected similar rules apply to Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens. However, there probably isn't any wildlife in them that rely on the chestnuts and fungi etc. as winter food source like the deer present in Richmond Park.