Friday 29 June 2018

A Little Egret visited the Long Water. They are getting commoner in southern England, but are still very rare visitors to central London.

It spent some time preening its immaculate white feathers on the gravel bank at the Vista.

The Great Crested Grebe family were a few yards along the bank, in the same place as yesterday.

The new Coot family remain under the parapet of the Italian Garden, near the dead willow tree.

The Tufted ducklings were at the east end of the Serpentine again, bobbing up and down like toy submarines.

Virginia sent this charming picture of two of them riding on their mother's back.

I went to the Round Pond to see how the Egyptian goslings were doing. They are down to six, but the survivors are growing fast, and are beginning to grow the primary feathers in their wings.

Their mother chased away a much larger Canada Goose that had got too near her goslings.

Three families of Greylags, with quite large goslings, saw someone with a plastic bag that might have contained food, and came in to the edge of the Serpentine.

The Mute Swan and her four small cygnets are tolerated by the dominant pair on the Long Water provided they don't go too far from the bridge. They were eating water weed.

Carrion Crows have to learn how to remove the shells of peanuts, by watching their parents do it. This one hasn't got the trick yet.

A Song Thrush sang in the Flower Walk. They will be falling silent soon, along with the other songbirds. Even Robins, which sing almost all the year round, are mostly silent in July.

Great Tits come down time after time to collect pine nuts to feed their hungry fledglings,  whose scratchy begging calls you can hear in the background.

The male Little Owl near the leaf yard was in the upper chestnut tree.

I bicycled to The Leg o' Mutton Reservoir, a small nature reserve on the south bank of the Thames just upstream of Hammersmith Bridge, to see a Common Tern with two chicks on a raft. Sorry about the poor quality of this video. I put on a polarising filter to cut glare, and it had a very bad effect on clarity.


  1. I saw the Little Egret, and couldn’t believe my eyes!
    I really like the Leg O’Mutton. It’s a very peaceful place. The swans who live not far away in Barnes Pond have a ‘Polish’ cygnet

    1. If I have a spare moment I will go back to the Leg o' Mutton and try to get a better video. I lost a lot of good pictures today by putting a polarising filter on both cameras. Should have experimented first.

  2. I didn't know about the Leg o'Mutton Reservoir. It looks and sounds lovely. It is so marvellous to be able to find secluded corners of wild nature inside the heart of such a megalopolis!

    I had assumed a Canada would back down to nothing. I stand corrected. Egyptians are the ones not to back down to nothing!

  3. I was surprised you didn't mention, and no-one has commented on, the decidedly suspicious Grey Heron creeping up, v e r y s l o w l y, on the Little Egret from behind...