Thursday 16 August 2018

It was a wet day. My video camera isn't waterproof, so the best I could manage today was a general view of Kensington Gardens looking down to the Vista from the shelter of the Queen's Temple.

Not much was happening. The stars of the show were out of sight. The Little Owl was probably in his hole, and the Kestrel had no need to put on an aerial display when she could stroll around and pick up worms from the soggy ground.

A Carrion Crow was getting soaked on the mirror sculpture outside the Serpentine Gallery. On fine days the crows enjoy looking at their reflection here.

The Great Tits at the leaf yard were sheltering in the waterproof yew and holly bushes, but some came out to be fed.

The big Canada Goose family with fifteen goslings, now grown up, came on to the Vista to feed, a place that is normally inaccessible to them as it is infested with dogs. The adopted Greylag is still with the others.

The Bar-Headed Goose on the Serpentine was preening.

A close-up shot of one of the blue-eyed Greylags.

Blondie and her mate were in the middle of the Serpentine Road, which was completely free of traffic.

A late brood of Mallards appeared at the landing stage near the Diana fountain.

In two places beside the lake, Mallards were busily probing some little clumps of plants, as if the rain was bringing out something edible. Maybe there is just enough earth here to harbour worms.

The white Mallard was beside the Serpentine with his male companion. I haven't seen his mate for some time.

The large family of Tufted Ducks was near the bridge. There are still thirteen ducklings, but I could only get eleven into this shot. By now it was absolutely pouring and I didn't feel like hanging around for a better one.

The Great Crested Grebes from the east end of the island dived under the moored pedalos to find fish for their three chicks.

The Coots at the Serpentine outflow were looking after their chick under one of the arches of the false bridge. Only the middle arch, where the nest is, has water flowing through it, the others are just for architectural effect.

The willow tree near the real bridge, already half collapsed, has shed a very large branch into the water. This will remain alive, because it's still attached to the trunk on one side. One of the local Coots was imperturbably eating willow leaves under the wreck.

The Moorhen in the hawthorn tree on the Dell restaurant terrace seems to be thinking of nesting again.

More and more Cormorants are arriving. These ones were at the island.

The young Grey Herons were restless again, and climbing round their nest. The front edge is beginning to collapse under their weight, but they have to leave the nest soon anyway.

Two Lesser Black-Backed Gulls were washing in the Diana fountain. I haven't seen the young one before.


  1. I love the sound of the rain in the clip. I understand that you must all be heartily sick of it in England, but I cannot begin to express how envious I am. The birds look quite happy with it too: less people to dodge, I guess.

    1. The sound of rain is much exaggerated by the echoing interior of the little building and a minor local deluge from gutters blocked with premature dead leaves caused by the drought. It makes for a good theatrical effect.