Tuesday 1 November 2016

Three Goldcrests were hopping around in the trees at the top of Buck Hill.

A flock of Long-Tailed tits passed by.

But the Goldcrests weren't following the flock, as they sometimes do --- they were there already.

A Mistle Thrush was having a change from rowan berries, and was eating what I think was the seed of a black lime.

The female Chaffinch was on the fence of the children's playground.

In the leaf yard, the Nuthatches were coming down for food as usual.

A Jackdaw pointed the way to the Diana fountain, a popular place for Jackdaws, as the expensive sports turf in the enclosure is full of worms.

A pair of Feral Pigeons at the Vista were engaged in unseasonal behaviour.

Another pigeon was less fortunate. I think this young Lesser Black-Backed Gull had killed it, rather than scavenging it, since there were feathers all over the shore, showing that there had been a violent struggle. So that makes three pigeon-killing gulls so far -- and no doubt more to come.

A Black-Headed Gull at the Lido was playing with a bit of reed. Usually it's young gulls that play, but this is an adult.

A Grey Wagtail appeared on a reed raft at the outflow of the Serpentine.

After I said that the number of Cormorants was decreasing, there were 39 today, including two on the Round Pond where they are not usually seen. This one was fishing in the Long Water near the Italian Garden, disentangling its catch from the algae that had come up with it.

One of the two Pochard-Tufted Duck hybrids was in the same place. We only spot them occasionally, probably because from a distance they look quite like Tufted Ducks. But note the marmalade-coloured eye, the slightly vermiculated pattern of the feathers, and the Pochard-shaped head with no tuft.

The Queen's Temple is full of clumps of hibernating Harlequin ladybirds.


  1. Bit exposed for hibernation, isn't it? Or are they confused as they're not designed for this climate? Perhaps temperature doesn't matter.
    I've recently seen a lot of them hugging the white walls of the House inside Clissold Park, as well.

    1. They don't have much choice in this bare masonry building. The main hibernation site is the public lavatory near the Italian Garden, where there are lots of dark neglected corners.

  2. I think the pigeons getting nice and cosy better watch their backs with three killer gulls about! At St Pancras you often see the hawk to control pigeons. Let's hope they don't introduce these gulls!

    1. I think gulls introduce themselves. There are lots of town Herring Gulls now, but Lesser Black-Backs have not yet fully adjusted to urban life. They will. Also, I think that Herring Gulls will take up pigeon hunting.