Sunday 1 October 2017

A Carrion Crow pulled a rose out of the fountain in the Rose Garden, not to admire it but to see if there were any insects in it.

The Peregrine was on the Household Cavalry barracks tower again. When it stepped back from the edge of the ledge it was invisible from the ground. So the pair may be there for much of the time, seen only when they come out to look over the edge.

I wouldn't normally publish a picture of a Feral Pigeon, but this is a very beautiful one. It was on the railings at Peter Pan.

And we just have to have a picture of a Robin from time to time. It was in a bush in the Rose Garden.

A young Herring Gull was playing with a whole horse chestnut fruit, flying up with it and dropping it in the water.

Herring Gulls can pick up larger objects than this, and I've seen one carrying a tennis ball.

This is a better video of a Herring Gull doing the worm dance than I managed earlier. But it only seems to be getting very small things.

The Black Swan came over to eat birdseed on the edge of the Serpentine. A Coot wanted some too and, after being shooed away, found some floating bits on the other side of the swan.

There was a solitary Shoveller on the Serpentine, not yet quite into his full showy breeding plumage.

There has been a single Little Grebe on the Round Pond for several days. The name of the genus, Tachybaptus, means 'fast diver', and it's well deserved.

The youngest Moorhen chick in the Italian Garden deliberately swam under the full force of the fountain. Moorhens like a challenge.

Four kinds of bird on adjacent posts at Peter Pan: a Cormorant, a Black-Headed Gull, a Lesser Black-Back and a young Herring Gull. There were at least 20 Cormorants on the lake, and numbers will stay high until they have eaten most of the medium-sized fish.

A Little Owl was calling from an oak tree on Buck Hill 150 yards north of the tall lime tree where a pair used to nest (they have now moved to a horse chestnut nest to the entrance of the allotment). The male of the pair has sometimes been seen in the oak, often on a hole in the trunk. But he certainly wasn't in it this time, because there were two squirrels looking out of it.

I went round and round the tree with binoculars, but the leaves are still quite thick and I couldn't find the owl.

Mario sent me directions to find three interesting fungi in Kensington Gardens. These are Redlead Roundhead mushrooms, Leratiomyces ceres, an Australian species, named after the plant collector Auguste-Joseph Le Rat (1872--1910). Anyway, he made his name glorious by having something named after him. They are on the patch of wood chips under the plane trees a few yards south of the Speke obelisk.

Here is a fine big bright Chicken of the Woods, Laetiporus suphureus, on an American oak tree 100 yards west of the obelisk.

This large puffball is as big as a medium-sized Giant Puffball. Mario thinks it's a Pestle Puffball, Lycoperdon excipuliforme.


  1. I think the puffball is probably Lycoperdon excipuliforme, the Pestle Puffball

    1. Thanks. It's whiter and rounder than the one we had on the other side of the lake a couple of years ago.

  2. That Coot is either very foolish or very brave. Oh wait, it's both!

    There can never be too many pictures of Robins. It makes me so happy to see their cheery bright selves.

    1. The Black Swan is not vicious with smaller birds, unlike the Mute Swans which peck to injure.