Wednesday, 22 April 2015

The Grey Heron at the Dell restaurant is getting even bolder. Today it landed on a table where people were sitting. It was treated kindly and given fish and chips. When the people left soon afterwards, it stayed on the table and finished the scraps, though it left the salad.

I looked for the Tawny Owl around the nest tree and didn't see or hear him. However, the tree had a Blackcap on it ...

... and a Treecreeper on the beech tree next to it. This was more visible than usual on the smooth bark of the beech. I wouldn't have thought that this was a good tree for Treecreepers, with few crevices that might contain insects.

On an oak tree near the leaf yard, a Wren was singing fit to bust.

The female Little Owl was in the usual hole in the tree up the hill from last year's nest tree. She was sitting low down in the hole, which made it impossible to get a good picture, but she seemed to feel safe there.

When I came back later for a better shot, she was more exposed and went into the hole when I was still some way off.

A pair of Coots is trying to build a nest inside one of the fountains in the Italian Garden. They try this hopeless venture every year, and the nest is soon washed away.

The piebald Greylag Goose on the Serpentine was preening. When it stood up and had a good flap, it showed that its primaries are white.

On the Serpentine island a young Herring Gull was eating what looked like a Mallard's egg.

A Jackdaw was looking for worms in the Diana fountain enclosure, and found two while I watched. Then it spotted something shiny and pounced on it. But it was only the plastic lid of a takeaway coffee cup.


  1. I agree Ralph that the other photo of a female sparrow does appear to have a slightly crossed bill which I had not noticed before. Here's hoping the sparrows return to the park in the future. I loved your photo of the piebald Greylag Goose, it really is a lovely looking bird with all that white on the primaries.

    1. The trouble about white primaries is that they fray. Melanin makes feathers much stronger. But this goose seems well enough.

  2. Hi Ralph,
    I wondered if you could please help me identify a bird I saw at the serpentine last weekend. I can't find it in my bird book (am very novice!) and wonder if it is in a seasonal plumage or something. Unfortunately I can't post the picture here - am I able to send it to you another way?
    With kind regards,

    1. I don't publish my email address on the blog because it attracts spam, of which I already have a great deal. You can upload a picture to the web at
      this site . It will send you a URL, which you can then put in a comment.


    1. Thanks. It's an Egyptian Goose, on the landing stage for the electric boat next to the Diana fountain.