Tuesday 21 March 2017

The Little Owl in the oak tree near the Albert Memorial has not been evicted by the Mallards, and was back in her hole today. Possibly she has chased them off, but equally they may just have decided that this tree was too difficult a place to nest in.

There was still no sign of the owl in the lime tree near the Henry Moore sculpture. The Carrion Crow in the nest at the top of the tree looked out for a moment.

At the bottom of the hill a Goldcrest sang in a hawthorn tree.

There have been no more casualties in the two Egyptian Goose families. We had a fright when we saw that Blondie on the Serpentine had only five, but later saw her mate shepherding the missing two back along the edge of the lake. Here he is looking after the family while she preens.

Here is a charming picture by Virginia Grey of one of the goslings on the Round Pond doing the meerkat pose.

On the edge of the pond, a Starling was foraging in the foam left by choppy waves breaking over the kerb. It seems that the waves bring up edible things that are worth getting soaked for.

A young Herring Gull on the Serpentine was playing an inexpert game of drop-catch with a stone, missing it more often than not when it dived in.

Africa Gómez' always interesting blog The Rattling Crow has a video clip of a gull that has learnt the full game, dropping the stone and catching it as it falls. It takes some time to learn this skill.

A Cormorant was fishing over the wire baskets near the bridge. It's unlikely to catch anything by poking its head into a basket, but this scares the fish out into open water where they can be caught.

On another basket, a pair of Coots were trying to bend the end of a long twig round and tuck it into their nest. Repeated attempts failed and they left it sticking out.

A Great Crested Grebe on the Serpentine was preening its shining white underside.

A Tufted Duck at Peter Pan looked remarkably iridescent in the sunlight.

A Mandarin drake chased another away.

This Honeybee had fallen into the Serpentine and was buzzing desperately. We tried to get it out with a long stick, but sadly it drowned before we could rescue it.


  1. The bee was likely already fungus ridden and at deaths door step. At least that is how many who drowned in California were found to be.

    1. I do hope we're not going to see the park bees dropping like, well, flies. At least no one is using insecticide here.

  2. I am afraid the Mallard couple has not abandoned its designs on the home of the Little Owl. The duck was on her roof this morning (Wed), making a lot of noise and peering in. Her mate was up another oak, shouting encouragement.

    1. I saw them myself in the late morning, but the female Mallard was at the top of the tree. In the afternoon she had gone. No owl visible.

  3. Poor Bee. How sad. At least you did all that could be done.