Friday 23 March 2018

The Grey Herons' nest on the south side of the Serpentine island is still active. One of them flew across the lake to rejoin its mate. But neither of them are sitting down, so there are no eggs, and it is getting late by the standards of these early-nesting birds. This picture was taken from the far side of the lake.

The Great Crested Grebes at the east end of the island are rebuilding their nest for the third time this year. Maybe they mean to nest properly now, but they can go on with this tentative game for a long time.

In this distant picture taken through the twigs, you can just see a Coots' nest in the background, inconveniently close.

A Moorhen climbed rapidly up the mesh of one of the enclosures in the Italian Garden ponds.

On the edge of the pond, a Black-Headed Gull struggled to swallow a large piece of bread.

Mute Swans are by no means silent. This pair is nesting on the bank of the Long Water next to the bridge.

A pair of Mandarins preened on the willow next to the Serpentine bridge.

A Carrion Crow stared challengingly at me from the wall of the Lido swimming area, expecting a peanut, which it got of course.

The small birds were also staring impatiently: a Great Tit ...

... a Blue Tit ...

... and a Coal Tit.

Starlings on the leaf yard railings interfered with feeding them.

I have nothing against Starlings, which are intelligent and beautiful, but if you start feeding them they will never leave you alone, and that makes it impossible to feed the smaller birds.

The white-faced Blackbird can find sultanas in the scrub without difficulty. I think she finds them by smell.

In the absence of a real owl today, here is a very pleasing rucksack I saw at the leaf yard. Its owner told me that it is a piece of Harry Potter merchandise, rperesenting Hedwig, Harry Potter's owl.

A Buff-Tailed Bumblebee in the Rose Garden was having difficulty gathering nectar from some very small flowers, which bowed down to the ground when the heavy insect landed on them.

There were plenty of bumblebees. This one was on a gorse bush at the Lido.

The Household Cavalry, in full uniform, practised their manoeuvres in Hyde Park.


  1. Hi Ralph, I also went looking for the owls today and couldn't see any of them. Might try again tomorrow, so maybe I'll see you!

  2. Does the Mute Swan make that noise at the end of the clip? I can hardly recognize it as any sort of bird sound! I guess they are mute because they wheeze and snort and hiss, but they don't sing (unlike our dear departed Black Swan, which I contend could sing).

    Harry Potter's films have been a mixed blessing for owls. On the one hand they single-handedly did more to raise a new generation of owl-o-philes than any other endeavour. On the other hand lots of children and no fewer adults (who should know better) got it into their heads that they were entitled to having Snowy Owls as their pets.

    You are right about Starlings. I fear that they also know they can be irrisistible. Thence, the knowing glimmer in their intelligent eyes.

    Those are very fine horses. Very very fine.

    1. No, the noise at the end is a combination of a Robin, a pushchair with a squeaky wheel, and a child speaking German. Perhaps I should have cut the video a couple of seconds earlier.

  3. but goodness, the armour don't half clank!

    1. Full armour must have sounded like an accident in a saucepan factory.

  4. Lovely colours captured on the Starlings.