Wednesday, 4 July 2018

The Great Crested Grebe family from the Long Water had gone under the bridge on to the Serpentine. It's seldom you see a young bird that has had enough to eat, but these chicks, constantly fed by their energetic parents, really were full and none of them could manage another fish. The male offered it to his mate, but she had eaten enough too, so finally he swallowed it himself.

The grebe nesting in the fallen poplar tree on the Long Water was sitting with raised wings as if holding chicks, but I've been deceived by that before and am far from sure that any have hatched.

The grebes who stole this Coot's nest on the island and used it themselves have no hope of reclaiming it. Its original owners have built it up into a great castle of twigs, and one of them is dozing complacently on top.

The Coots who returned to their oddly situated nest on the raft, on top of the netting intended to stop birds from nesting there, have made themselves comfortable with a soft nest lining of grass. I can't imagine how they got the branch on the left up on to the netting.

The Moorhen chicks in the Italian Garden fountain have grown, but this one can still stand on the mat of water weed as long as it keeps moving.

Rumours of the loss of two Canada goslings from the family of 15 turn out to be unfounded. Jorgen saw them all back together this morning. Evidently two of them had wandered off. He says that the eldest ones can already fly. I couldn't find them to take a picture -- probably they were at the Lido bathing area, now closed off for paying customers.

These Canada goslings are growing their flight feathers, but have some way to go.

A Greylag Goose family took a break from eating grass and sampled the plants at the edge of the shrubbery. One parent kept a constant watch for dogs.

The Mute Swan cygnets on the Long Water were eating water weed with gusto near the Italian Garden.

Yet another video of the Tufted Duck family, but I can't resist the way the tiny ducklings dive so effortlessly. There are still five.

A close-up of one of the ducklings.

A group of Red-Crested Pochards, all males in eclipse, lurked in the bushes on the east side of the Long Water. They must have flown in, and have either not started moulting their wing feathers or have already finished and grown new ones.

A Lesser Black-Backed Gull finished off one of the notorious pigeon-eater's kills near the Triangle car park. This is not the second would-be pigeon killer, whom I have not seen for some time. That gull has paler feet than this one, and a differently marked bill.

A Magpie saw a couple of Black-Headed Gulls on a dead branch, and climbed up to annoy them. They flew away.

The male Little Owl at the leaf yard was in the upper of the two chestnut trees.

The pair of Blackbirds and their one fledgling at the top of the Dell find the shallow, fast flowing water at the top of the waterfall  a perfect bathing place, and constantly visit it. Today it was the male's turn.

A male Emperor dragonly hunted at the Italian Garden.


  1. There can never be too many Tufted Ducklings videos. They are adorable, and so self-sufficient and agile.

    I too would never think the day would come in which a chick would say 'enough food for today'. Live and learn! Those are model parents.

    Is it it me, or isn't the Coot on top of the netting wearing the most human-like, smug, self-satisfied expression?

    1. Coots are always smug, even when angry. They are bourgeois birds, obsessed with property and furniture. But, as with humans, that seems to be the key to success.