Thursday, 14 September 2017

There was a fight in the Serpentine near the island. The first thing I saw was a Moorhen furiously attacking a Coot, a surprising sight. Another Coot looked on.

Then it became clear that the Coot had seized a Moorhen chick, and was shaking it violently. A small crowd had formed, and there were cries of horror.

The Coot had the chick by the neck, and it looked as if the little creature's last moment had come.

The Coot dropped the chick and went away. The chick lay in the water, apparently lifeless, for half a minute. Then it suddenly sat up and paddled away briskly to the shelter of the island. It had been shamming dead to prevent further attack. Everyone cheered.

Great Crested Grebes control their aggression. Here two have a faceoff on the Serpentine. They strike threatening postures, but stay far enough apart to avoid a fight breaking out.

The Black Swan was feeding near the Dell restaurant. He reached down to the bottom of the lake to pick up edible objects, maybe snails. Although he is much smaller than a Mute Swan, his neck is just as long to help him reach the food.

He stood up and had a good flap.

A pair of Gadwalls were dabbling for food at the edge of the water at the Dell restaurant. They are, at least in theory, vegetarians, though they probably scoop up invertebrates along with their plant food.

At the Lido restaurant Starlings massed on a planter before raiding an unattended table, made short work of some leftover potato crisps, and enjoyed a communal bath in the lake.

A Robin in the Rose Garden perched on the arm of a bench and stared at me suspiciously. I haven't yet managed to make friends with the Robins here.

Nearby, one of the pair of Dunnocks, I think the female, had found a tiny edible grub on the path.

This Green Woodpecker on Buck Hill also seem to have something, possibly a wireworm. It was feeding on the ground, but we startled it and it flew into a tree for a moment -- just long enough for one shot -- and then away.

Several Mistle Thrushes were eating berries in a rowan tree on Buck Hill. They have had most of the berries on the tree where they ripened first.

Some Long-Tailed Tits passed through the trees.

This finely made spider web was on the edge of the Dell, stretched between a branch and the railings, a distance of five feet. I prodded it to see if a spider would rush out, but it seemed not to be in residence.


  1. Thought I'd let you know - the video links only show like this: , not with the usual image link (i.e. needs copy& paste). Could be a problem at my end, of course.

  2. Replies
    1. Apologies to all. I did the blog hastily and forgot to embed the video links properly. They should work now.