Saturday 2 June 2018

A Wren uttered loud alarm calls and zigzagged from tree to tree,  evidently trying to mislead a predator about the location of the nest to which it was bringing a lacewing. It had reason to be careful, as there was a Jay in the branches above.

A young Great Tit was begging for food in a bush beside the Long Water.

It got some.

There was a young Robin in the next bush.

A Starling searched in the grass for wireworms and brought them to its fledgling. This video was shot near the Italian Garden -- you can hear the fountains.

A Nuthatch appeared in the leaf yard, collected some pine nuts, and took them away to a nearby tree.

The Song Thrushes are singing less now, but we still get a few cheerful phrases. This one was beside the Long Water.

The female Little Owl at the leaf yard was in a tree just up the hill from her nest tree.

There is absolutely no sign of owlets near any of the Little Owls' nest trees, which is disappointing.

A Coot which was building a nest in a silly place on the edge of the Serpentine defied a Grey Heron which had got too near its pointless construction.

Another Coot had found a nest site in a much better place, in the reeds under the parapet of the Italian Garden.

The Coot nesting at the Dell restaurant, which originally laid 14 eggs of which five hatched, has thrown a lot of eggs out of the nest. But it is keeping a few which it believes are still developing, and is turning them carefully. Presumably birds can hear a live chick in the egg when it reaches a reasonable size.

We haven't had a picture of the Mute Swan family on the Long Water for a while, so here are the four cygnets with their mother.

Their father has cleared almost all the other swans off his territory. There were just a handful of swans hanging around nervously by the bridge.

It's impossible to keep count of the Greylag, Canada and Egyptian goslings which are now all over the Serpentine. Probably there are about 70 in all.

The geese and their goslings are perfectly at ease with humans (as long as they don't have dogs).

But there's just one Mallard duckling. Ducks' careless parenting and the many hungry Herring Gulls combine to reduce the survival rate almost to zero.

The dark Mallard brothers were eating midges, which are swarming thickly on the lake.

A Red-Tailed Bumblebee (Bombus lapidarius) gathered nectar from a cornflower in the wildflower patch behind the Lido.

I wish I could have got a better picture of it, as it is the first time I have seen this species. With luck I should get my good lens back from being serviced early next week, and the quality of pictures should go up again.


  1. I can't believe that the wonderful picture of the Bumblebee feeding on the cornflower picture can be improven. It is just perfection. The colours, the composition, the vividness, the clarity. Amazing.

    Coots are the embodiment of those famous lines by Tolkien: "Will shall be the sterner, heart the bolder, spirit the greater as our strength lessens."

    It is a joy to see so many goslings. The Déjuner sur l'herbe looks like the very painting itself.

    1. That picture is definitely not sharp enough. The performance of the old Sigma lens has been annoying me for weeks, and I can't wait to get back to a lens that is absolutely sharp at full zoom. These pictures are taken from the minimum distance at which the lens will focus, 2 metres. I can go much closer with the little bridge camera, but it would frighten the bee away.