Monday 24 December 2012

A dim drizzly day. I saw one of the adult Great Black-Backed Gulls and the young one flying heavily over the Serpentine, just above the water to take advantage of the extra lift. They are not graceful birds, having neither the agility of smaller gulls nor the effortless skimming flight of an albatross. Here the adult sets itself down in the water. The main impression is simply one of hugeness.

 A small group of Red-Crested Pochards had arrived at the Serpentine island.

The movements of these birds are obsure: one day you might see half a dozen, the next day none. Do they visit from Regent's Park from time to time? Do they simply disappear round the back of the island, where they are hidden by moored pedalos and the wire nets of water plants? The front duck on the left side is a female Common Pochard, looking much like a Red-Crested one in this shot, but note her grey back.

A group of four Canada-Greylag hybrid geese, presumably siblings because they are always seen together, has been on the lake for some time.

The female Tawny Owl was in her usual place on the side of the nest tree. She always wakes up and stares severely at me when I visit her, unlike her mate who remains blissfully asleep.

A very happy Christmas to all the faithful readers of this blog who have endured my vague maunderings for months -- especially on a day like this when there is really nothing exciting to see. I will try to get out tomorrow, if only for a short time. They only way to see whether there is anything worth reporting is to go out again and again, and keep hoping.


  1. This reader loves your blog not just for the birds and the intriguing pictures; I just enjoy greatly how well, how kindly, how lovingly and entertainingly, you describe what you see.

    Merry Christmas to all!

  2. I second that. Even when there is "nothing exciting" to report the blog still manages to be interesting and informative, entertaining and well-written. A constant delight. Thanks and a happy Christmas to you too.