Saturday, 16 June 2018

The cygnets of the dominant Mute Swan pair on the Long Water are now five weeks old, and are beginning to get quite large. While their mother looked after them, their father kept a lookout.

The Canada Goose family with 15 goslings made a beeline for someone who was feeding the birds.

The Bar-Headed Goose from St James's Park will be with us for several weeks, as it has started moulting and won't be able to fly till it has its new wing feathers. Many geese choose to moult on the Serpentine, but it seems odd that this one has left its relatives, who are perfectly safe on the St James's Park lake.

Egyptian goslings have a tendency to sprawl with their legs sticking out.

The Mallard on the Serpentine still has her three ducklings, and they are visibly larger.

It was changeover time on the Great Crested Grebes' nest in the fallen poplar tree in the Long Water.

Only a few yards away another pair were bringing weed to build up their nest attached to a submerged branch. It has been here for several days, but I think the soggy structure is too weak to be used, and it constantly disintegrates.

A Coot examined a rope and a buoy in the ever present hope of being able to build a nest on them.

On the nest under the balcony of the Dell restaurant, a Coot bought the menu to its five chicks so that they could know what scraps they might be getting later.

A Moorhen chick stood on a water lily leaf in the Italian Garden pond. The others were hidden in a clump of plants.

The Herring Gulls have taken to hitching lifts on pedalos. It allows them to search for food without stirring a wing.

The pair of Carrion Crows near the Henry Moore sculpture have two young ones. One parent is on the right.

People bring apples to the park to feed the Rose-Ringed Parakeets. A Blackbird was very glad to finish off the discarded remains of one.

This fledgling Great Tit couldn't see its parents, so it just cheeped occasionally. When one appeared, the chick would beg loudly to be fed and flutter its wings.

A patch of bramble flowers near the bridge attracted Honeybees and a pair of White-Tailed Bumblebees. For some reason, White-Tailed Bumblebees are much commoner than Buff-Tailed this year. Last year it was the opposite.

In the fountain in the Rose Garden, a female Emperor dragonfly laid eggs on the iron cover of the drain. Their normal place is at the waterline of reed stems and partly submerged twigs, and they see anything roughly like that as suitable.

The fishing season has started. It might as well be done in comfort.


  1. If coots learn to read they will take over the world.

    1. They're more intelligent than our politicians.

  2. I was just going to say exactly that!

    Gulls are also learning to harness the power of a different stronger species for their own good, like we did with horses and oxen.

    Let us hope we shall be treated to the spectacle of a Coot nest built around that bright yellow buoy.

  3. So why are there so few gulls around this summer?

    1. Not when the black-headed gulls return shortly?

    2. There have been over 100 Herring Gulls at times. The first Black-Headed Gull returned today.

  4. I like the joke about the menu. Is 15 the largest brood of Canada Goslings that you have witnessed Ralph? Your record of the flotilla of youngsters is rather appealing!

    1. I've seen 18 on the Grand Union Canal near Kensal Green, and I think they were all from the same pair though you can never be sure with Canadas as they share childcare.