Friday 30 March 2018

Two male Little Owls were visible, both very nervous. The one at the leaf yard dashed into his hole as soon as he saw me ...

... and the one in the oak tree near the Albert Memorial only remained on his branch for a couple of seconds as I approached.

In contrast, the female owl in the lime tree near the Henry Moore sculpture remained perfectly calm. The difficulty in photographing her is that she only looks down for a minute and then goes into a doze.

The Chaffinch in the Rose Garden was hopping around in the flower bed. He clearly wanted to visit the feeder, but it was occupied by Rose-Ringed Parakeets.

A Blue Tit was having no trouble with the nut feeder, as it's hard for parakeets to use this.

Someone had thrown a lot of peanuts on the ground in the Flower Walk, and a Carrion Crow was happily working its way through them.

The white-faced Blackbird waited on a stone crown on the parapet of the Italian Garden.

She flew down and poked around in the grass to find the sultanas I threw to her.

The Song Thrush near the bridge was singing happily from an Italian alder tree in the drizzle.

A prettily marked pale grey Feral Pigeon perched on a drain on the edge of the Serpentine.

The Grey Heron has been back in the nest on the island for five out of the last six days. but I have seen no sign of its mate.

On the basket underneath, the pair of Great Crested Grebes are still claiming the Coots' nest.

The Coot under the balcony of the Dell restaurant was off its nest yesterday, and the insecurely lodged nest was disintegrating in the small waves on the lake. But today it has rebuilt the nest. I don't think it will last. A few hours of a stiff westerly breeze will wash it away.

Another Coot has built a nest in the usual disastrous place at the Serpentine outflow. Any chick that hatches get washed over the weir. Although there is a sloping plank to help them to climb back up -- you can see the top of it here -- they never seem to manage it.

Coots' nesting urge is unstoppable, and you often see them vaguely assembling twigs in completely unsuitable open places on the edge of the lake.

On the Long Water, the female Mute Swan was taking a break from sitting on her eggs, and the male climbed on to the little island to guard them.


  1. I can't understand why the male Little Owls should be afraid of your presence. The other Little Owls are either unaffected or welcoming. Why are they so skittish?

  2. The male owl at the leaf yard used to be very confident. I think he must have had a fright. His mate was afraid for three years after some horrible children threw sticks at her, but has now recovered. The male at the Albert Memorial has always been shy. It's noticeable what different personalities and habits the six commonly seen Little Owls have.