Sunday 10 January 2016

The Black Swan was alone with his girlfriend at the east end of the Serpentine, hooting and displaying to her.

The girlfriend's brother was at the other end of the lake near the bridge with three other young Mute Swans. A large and brutal male adult was giving them a hard time. The brother is in the background.

The Canada Geese were mistakenly feeling that spring was on its way. The male of this pair launched a dummy attack on some others, coming right across the lake hooting and posturing. He will have earned some street cred with his mate.

Three young Herring Gulls were playing the game of walking along the buoys at the Lido without falling off. You can see from the way the dirty undersides of the buoys are tilted up by their weight that this is quite an acrobatic feat, and requires outstretched wings for balance.

Can a bird look surprised? This Jay had taken a peanut from me and was opening it on a branch when it lost its grip and the nut fell to the ground. If you know this, it looks a picture of consternation. If you don't, perhaps not. I gave it another peanut to soothe its hurt feelings.

When someone else -- in this case Jim -- is feeding the small birds in the leaf yard, there is a chance to take some pictures. Here is a Blue Tit coming to be fed ...

... and one of the three bold Coal Tits who will come to people's hands.

A Robin near Peter Pan came out and sang when he saw me coming by, and I tried his patience by taking pictures of him before I rewarded him with some pine nuts.

A male Blackbird viewed the proceedings suspiciously from the next tree.

The female Blackbird on the other side of the Long Water is quite approachable when she is busy looking for worms. I think she is a resident, as the winter migrant Blackbirds are very wary of people.


  1. Hi Ralph, just wanted to take the opportunity to thank you for the interesting walk-around of KG on Friday. I am back now, spine seems to have healed up a bit so I can move better without too much medication, and I am pleased with my photographs, esp. of Coal Tit. It was very nice to be talking to someone so knowledgable, since as a biologist I often find myself in need of layman's terms to explain stuff to people which can be difficult. Kudos for knowing about the leafminer, not many people do! :) I wish you the best of luck with your blog, and maybe a "second of a lifetime" Cetti's!

  2. Thank you for your kind words. It was a pleasure, and I am always happy to show people around.