Wednesday 19 September 2018

It was a windy day, and it's getting windier as the tail of a hurricane crosses England. Blondie the Egyptian Goose and her mate were bounced up and down on the Serpentine.

A crowd of Egyptian Geese on the edge of the Serpentine. At the last count a few days ago their number had suddenly increased by at least 50, to 98.

At the west end of the island, a Great Crested Grebe and a chick were slowly picking apart a Coot nest, looking for insects.

The other chick had a face-off with a Cormorant, but wisely soon retreated.

A few feet away, one of the young Grey Herons stood on a post.

The Moorhen in the Italian Garden with two new chicks was in the water lilies, as usual.

Their liking for water lilies has been beautifully illustrated by the famous wildlife artist Charles Tunnicliffe.

One of the Peregrines from the Metropole Hilton Hotel in the Edgware Road visited the tower of the Household Cavalry barracks, the first time I've seen one there for months. Perhaps the direction of the wind had made their favourite ledge on the hotel uncomfortable.

The rowan tree on Buck Hill was tossing about too much for a Mistle Thrush to eat the fruit. It waited inside the tree for a pause in the gusts.

A Grey Wagtail perched on a rock at the top of the Dell waterfall.

A Carrion Crow found a larva of some kind on the edge of the Serpentine and delicately picked bits out of it.

There were quite a lot of House Martins over the Long Water, probably a migrating party passing through on the way to Africa.

A sunny spell lit up the beautiful plumage of a Starling at the Dell restaurant.

A Robin looked tense because there was another Robin a few feet away. Outside the breeding season males and females maintain separate territories and sing to defend them.

Virginia found a statuette of Ganesh at the Round Pond. This is not the first time that an image of Ganesh has been put on the shore here -- there seems to be some link between the god and water.


  1. Lately we have been finding the remains of voodoo rites or some similar religion in ponds and fountains. I am sure that for their practitioners it is natural and right, but I cannot deny that it is startling.

    Lovely iridiscent Starling! Although I must say that today art (Charles Tunnicliffe) carries the day.

    1. Glad to say that we just get the occasional tiny elephant.

      I have a large print of that Tunniciffe moorhen family on my wall. He is worth looking into.

  2. Yes great to see the Tunnicliffe picture again- beautiful.

    That's a lot of Egyptian Geese. Loved the photo of the interaction between the Cormorant + the juvenile grebe.

  3. There was a Tunnicliffe exhibition at the RA recently, including copies of the Ladybird books that the Moorhen picture was done for, which you could pick up and leaf through.

  4. Yes, still have a lot of my Ladybird books somewhere. Think they were my first wildlife books some 50 years ago + maybe the I-spy books. Then graduated to the Observer books. Now my house creaks under the vast volume of natural history books!