Saturday 16 April 2016

The Black Swan landed on the Serpentine island and chased off several Mute Swans. He was doing this to impress his girlfriend, who was watching from a few yards away.

There was also a good deal of chasing on the Long Water, where the dominant male is still working to evict all the invaders. He will never manage to keep them away permanently, as the newly cleared area near the bridge, shielded from dogs by the fence, is too much of a draw.

Incidentally, I wonder whether foxes get into this area. The stone parapet of the Italian Garden is not too high for an active fox, but to get to the bridge from here they would have to swim round the fence that Tony Duckett has put along the gravel bank below the Henry Moore.

Some Coots were fighting in the middle of the Serpentine. It went on for an unusually long time, more than five minutes.

Two Mandarins were eating crumbs at the Lido when a Magpie casually strolled in and, by its sheer presence, drove them away.

The Great Crested Grebes from the Serpentine island were preening. One of them performed that shrugging leap that grebes do to settle their feathers.

The four little Egyptian Geese on the Round Pond are still in good order, and visibly larger. But they are not yet out of danger from Herring Gulls, of which four were flying around the opposite side of the pond.

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull had made another kill near the Dell restaurant. He paused while eating it and flew around for a bit. Here he is coming back to land and resume his meal.

The usual two Grey Herons were sitting a wary distance apart in the willow tree on the west side of the Long Water. Are they rivals or possible mates sizing each other up before nesting in one of the baskets in the trees on the opposite side?

The Song Thrush near the bridge was foraging in the undergrowth.

This is the Wren that lives at the Lido restaurant, an is often seen in the planters. Here is is searching for insects an ornamental bush.

The male Little Owl of the pair in the lime tree near Henry Moore was calling from the hole.


  1. Lovely photos plus some interesting observations - as always in your fascinating blog

    1. Can I echo Pauline G's comments and point out a typo? Long Water not Round Pond? The Black Swan saga is a page turner. I'm intrigued to know what he's up to and you always find out.

    2. Thanks, and also thanks for the correction. This blog is written at high speed, and I get careless sometimes.

    3. It feels churlish highlighting an insignificant slip of the pen in an offering so glorious but it's clear you'd want to know. As someone whose pen is much more wayward I'm struck by how rarely yours is in the circumstances.

    4. Indeed, and I'm always grateful for corrections. This is supposed to be a blog of record.

  2. I really enjoy this blog, any news on the Tawny owls?

    1. Than k you. As soon as I hear any news about the owls, of course I will publish it. I'm missing them as much as anyone.