Saturday 2 December 2017

There was a Little Grebe again under the willow near the bridge, just visible through the branches.

A party of Egyptian Geese gathered around a puddle beside the Serpentine on a busy Saturday, ignoring a rolleblader swooping around next to them.

A Herring Gull played with a plastic buoy at the Lido.

A pair of Black-Headed Gulls and a pair of Moorhens were next to each other on the edge of the Serpentine, getting on with their separate affairs.

A Grey Heron was back on last year's nest on the island. Perhaps it was staking out territory for the spring, or perhaps it was just a convenient place to stand. This nest failed last year, after the pair had sat in it for some time.

Charlie the Carrion Crow saw me on the bridge and strolled up to take a peanut, which he opened on the spot undisturbed by passers by.

A Coal Tit looked out of a holly bush at the other end of the bridge.

Two Robins with adjacent territories got uncomfortably close to each other in the Rose Garden. They may be mates in spring, but in winter they're enemies, each defending a separate patch.

The Rose Garden, which is meticulously managed, can still produce a few roses in December.

One of each of the three well known pairs of Little Owls was out, in spite of the grey day. This is the male of the leaf yard pair, on the horse chestnut tree he favours at the moment.

Here is the female in the oak tree near the Albert Memorial.

And this is the female in the lime tree near the Henry Moore sculpture.


  1. The clarity of the picture of the Little Owl at her oak tree is wonderful. It must be difficult to get such a clear picture of an easily camouflaged bird inside a hole.

    Egyptians are used to dealing with crocs. Rollerblading humans are small potatoes to them, I guess.

    Great to see how deft Charlie is at cracking its peanut open. There is such trust and confidence in the bird's demeanour when it's drawing near the camera.

    1. Indeed, the Little Owl in the shadows at the back of the hole on a dim day is very difficult to photograph. Even using the longest possible exposure -- I can just keep the 450 mm lens reasonably steady at 1/320 second -- the ISO is very high and makes the picture grainy. It's necessary to play with brightness, contrast and colour saturation on the computer to get a publishable picture.