Sunday 21 April 2013

A beautiful sunny morning. Here a Long-Tailed Tit poses obligingly among the spring leaf buds.

At least two, probably three Tawny owlets were perched in a heap in the California bay tree in the Flower Walk. However, they were so hidden by leaves that you couldn't see more than the occasional patch of fluffy grey feathers, and I couldn't get a usable photograph. However, their mother was more visible in the other tree.

I don't know what kind of tree this is either; it is similar to but not the same as the bay. Some of its leaves have smooth edges, some are slightly serrated.

The Little Owl was sunbathing in his usual tree. His mate stuck her head out for a moment too, shortly before I arrived so I didn't get a picture of both of them.

This owl really seems to be calming down in the presence of people. He didn't shift when a noisy party of French students were milling around under the tree and one of them tried to climb it -- which fortunately is impossible.

The Mute Swans at the Lido now have three eggs, but are being oddly neglectful of them, although they are hanging around the edge of the nest. I am not sure whether these eggs are a going concern or not. It is possible that the swans have been pushed off the nest by the press of humans walking along the path only a few feet from them.

Yesterday evening at 7 pm, Marie Gill, my fellow bird counter for the Wildlife Group, was going home along the towpath in Little Venice -- the section on the Grand Union Canal just west of the intersection of the Regent's Canal and the Paddington Basin. And what should she see but a Red-Legged Partridge. This is her picture.

It was running around on the towpath and the adjoining road, and fluttered on to the roof of a canal boat. It was remarkably tame, she said, and came within 6 ft of her and started calling. This is probably the same Red-Legged Partridge that has been reported in London in recent weeks on the London Bird Club Wiki site.