Sunday 8 January 2017

Treecreepers have been hard to find recently, so it was good to see one near Queen's Gate. There are actually lots of them in the park, but they are small, well camouflaged, shy and above all quiet, and very easy to miss.

Just up the hill, the female Little Owl was looking out of her hole in the oak tree.

And the female near the Henry Moore sculpture had come out, on a grey drizzly but mild day. As you view here in her usual place she has her back to the light, which makes it hard to get a good picture.

One of the Blue Tits near the bridge posed prettily on a bramble.

A party of Starlings were having a communal bath in the Serpentine.

A Cormorant was searching for fish in the wire baskets next to the bridge. It didn't find a single one in the ten minutes I was watching. The Cormorants have really fished out the lake now, and there won't be anything to interest them till next summer.

This very small Egyptian Goose on the edge of the Serpentine near the island is, I think, the undersized one hatched last year. It was always far smaller than the rest of the brood, and no one thought it would survive, but it fought its way to adulthood.

Some Common Gulls were amusing themselves by balancing on the buoys at the Lido. It's a good game because they are slightly too heavy for the buoys, which keep tipping over, so that they have to flap to stay on.

The pigeon-killing Lesser Black-Backed Gull and his mate were taking a rest from hunting, and were on their favourite perch on the roof of the Dell restaurant.

Since the funfair closed there have been fewer visitors here, less food dropped, and fewer Feral Pigeons, and the gulls have been hunting at different places around the lake.

At the Lido restaurant, a Lesser Black-Backed Gull had found a cupcake case with some delicious chocolate cake stuck to it, and took its prize into the water to eat it.

A Mute Swan barged in, seized it, and started scraping the cake off the paper.

But the gull struck back, carried it off, and settled the matter by swallowing the whole thing, paper and all.

Statuettes of three Hindu gods, I think Shiva, Vishnu and Ganesh, were on the base of an urn in the Italian Garden. They had been placed looking out over the lake. I moved them round for this picture, then put them back in their proper place.

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