Sunday 5 February 2017

The first Coot nest of the year is under construction beside the fallen poplar branch near Peter Pan.

The Cormorants fishing in the Italian Garden Ponds are getting used to people walking by. This one was drying its wings on the edge of one of the ponds.

The Kingfisher was back in the willow tree below the Italian Garden balustrade. It had been preening, and was having a stretch.

Red-Crested Pochards have returned after their mysterious wanderings, and there were several on the island.

A Gadwall drake showed off his beautifully marked grey plumage.

The white Mallard was poking around under one of the arches at the outflow of the Serpentine.

There are three arches, but only the middle one has water flowing through it. They are intended to look like a bridge from a distance, and perhaps also to echo the three neo-Gothic arches through which the Westbourne river originally entered the lake at the top of the Long Water (and which can still be seen behind the loggia in the Italian Garden). But these arches are classical, echoing the style of the main Serpentine bridge designed in the early 19th century by John Rennie.

Someone was giving brioches to the gulls, which they were eating enthusiastically. This young Herring Gull flew off with its bit to avoid it being snatched.

The Redwings are still on the Parade Ground near the bandstand.

A single Goldfinch was chattering in a tree above them.

A pair of Pied Wagtails can often be seen running around the bandstand picking tiny bugs out of the gravel rolled into the tarmac. This is the male, with a black back ...

... and this is the female, with a grey back.

In a nearby tree, a pair of Coal Tits were searching for insects in the leaf buds.

The female Little Owl in the lime tree near Henry Moore was on view.

But the one in the oak near the Albert Memorial stayed at the back of her hole.


  1. Hi Ralph,

    Would u mind posting a map of the dead willow tree which that kingfisher seems to favour... just like the little owl one would be great... 😊😊

    Thank you so much,


    1. You really don't need a map for this. Go into the Italian Garden and to the left (east) side of the balustrade overlooking the Long Water. There is the willow tree, only feet away and obviously dead. Usually the Kingfisher is in a place that is best viewed from either side of the fountain in the middle of the balustrade.