Sunday 23 September 2018

Hundreds of House Martins collected over the Serpentine, Long Water and Round Pond, massing before heading south to Africa.

The rain had brought the insects down to low level, and the birds were whizzing past the people on the shore at ankle height. All you needed to do to get a video of them was to point the camera in any direction and push the button.

They kept getting into photographs of other birds, in this case some of the Great Crested Grebe family from the east end of the island.

While I was taking these pictures a Starling suddenly landed in front of my feet and started singing.

After several hours of rain, the usually sluggish stream in the Dell actually starts to flow. Before a city was built on top of it, the Westbourne was a proper little river,  but being paved over has starved it of water.

The pigeon-killing Lesser Black-Backed Gull had finished a bloody meal and was washing his face in the Serpentine. He's very particular about his appearance.

One of the young Grey Herons appeared in the top of a holly tree at the southwest corner of the bridge, looking out of place.

It saw an adult, probably one of its parents, in a neighbouring tree, and flew across to beg for food -- unsuccessfully, of course.

The adult, annoyed by this, flew away, leaving the young heron to have a face-off with a Magpie.

The rowan tree on Buck Hill was busy, with a flock of Starlings ...

... a Mistle Thrush ...

... and a Jay.

A Robin the the Rose Garden perched against an autumnal background.

In the afternoon the sun came out. If you can catch a Cormorant at the right angle in the sunlight, it looks quite glossy and handsome.

When the Olympics were held in the park in 2012, a large and splendid wildflower patch was planted at the back of the site, near the Rima relief. Some of the flowers managed to seed themselves and are still there. This is a Meadow Cranesbill.


  1. I could listen to the clip of the running stream for hours.

    I don't think anyone is going to complain if House Martins keep photobombing pictures!

    Plants are amazing beings. I just read the story of a fig tree that managed to sprout from the stomach of a dead man. The man had been eating figs before being killed and after the body decomposed the seeds from a fig took root,sprouted from his stomach and grew into a tree. It's all over the news:

  2. I'd like to think I could be so useful after I'm dead.

  3. There is a very popular Spanish song by Joan Manuel Serrat that says: "mi cuerpo será camino; le daré verde a los pinos y amarillo a las genistas" ("my body will become a road; I'll give pine trees their green and their yellow to gorse").