Saturday, 12 March 2016

A pair of Magpies were courting on the Vista, with the male flapping his wings in a display of masculine vigour.

But the Black Swan, who is very given to macho behaviour, was quite gentle today and was following girlfriend number one around, calling softly to her.

Three Grey Heron nests on the island were occupied. This is the one in the middle, which had been neglected for months and was falling to pieces, But the heron in it is quite young, and may simply be using it as a platform to stand on rather than nesting.

The baskets put in trees on the east side of the Long Water to attract herons don't have any takers so far. Fortunately the Egyptian Geese don't seem to have noticed them either. The ones in Regent's Park often have Egyptians in them, excluding herons and affecting the colony's breeding success.

The Little Owl in the oak tree near the Albert Memorial came out of the hole and perched in the top of the tree.

The Little Owl in the lime tree near the Henry Moore stayed in his hole.

He really seems to tolerate people now, and went to sleep while I was watching him. Wendy, of the excellent blog Wino Wendy's Wildlife World, saw both of the pair here, and has put up several good pictures of them. So we are now certain that there are six Little Owls in the park. Actually there are probably several more. They have only been here for four years, as far as anyone knows.

A Long-Tailed Tit was looking very elegant on the shoots at the bottom of a nearby tree.

In the Dell, a Blue Tit was giving a gaudy magnolia tree a lesson in tasteful colour.

There was a white pigeon bathing in the stream. (One ought to refer to these urban creatures as Feral Rock Doves, an inelegant name.)

The Redwings are still at the bottom of the Parade Ground near the bandstand.

Someone else saw a Fieldfare with them, but I missed this.

A Wren was singing loudly in a twisty bush near the bridge.

Update: on Thursday I mentioned an article about Great Tits using syntax in their calls to convey meaning. Africa Gómez discusses this further in her always interesting blog The Rattling Crow.


  1. Hi Ralph,

    I was wondering had you heard about the Firecrest by the Leaf Yard? It's been reported there twice this week.
    All the best


    1. Have looked for it several times over the past two days. No luck yet.

  2. Good luck with it!
    Still one bird I haven't but want to see!