Sunday 4 December 2016

There was fierce competition for the remaining fruit on the rowan tree on Buck Hill, and the scene was dominated by Mistle Thrushes, which are bigger than the other thrushes and more aggressive.

An occasional Rose-Ringed Parakeet came in, but mostly they were over at the leaf yard being fed by the Sunday visitors.

Parakeets have an advantage in dealing with the last few berries on a bunch, as they can use their dextrous feet to pull a stem up into easy reach.

The Blackbirds from the neighbouring hawthorns were doing well when they got a chance ...

... but a Redwing had to wait on another tree ...

... and so did a Song Thrush ...

... which eventually gave up and went to look for fallen berries on the ground.

The Chaffinches had abandoned the tree altogether, and the male was rooting around for insects in a patch of fallen leaves, almost invisible among them.

Another Blackbird had moved to a holly tree laden with ripe berries ...

... which a Wood Pigeon was shovelling down several at a time.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits passed by at the bottom of the hill.

At the south end of the hill, the male Little Owl in the lime tree was impossible to photograph without a branch in the way.

But the pair have chosen their new hole well, because the tangle in front of it helps to keep them from harassment by Magpies.

The male Little Owl near the Albert Memorial was looking out of the hole in the oak tree. You can see how much smaller he is than his mate by comparing yesterday's picture of her in the same hole.

The young Grey Heron at the Dell restaurant was on the reed raft, keeping an eye on the diners on the terrace in case any food became available. He had a good stretch.

A solitary female Gadwall was dabbling about on the edge of the Serpentine.


  1. The Chaffinch's camouflage is nearly perfect. It's amzing how colours that look very bright to our eyes help them be completely inconspicuous in the right environment (I'm thinking of Great Tits, Blue Tits and Goldfinches: how can something so bright disguise itself so well among leaves?).

    1. Very true. I've put a picture of a Robin on today's (Monday's) blog to emphasise the point.