Monday 19 November 2018

A search for the Black-Necked Grebes failed to find them on the lake or the Round Pond. There were plenty of Great Crested Grebes, looking a bit tousled in the chilly breeze ...

... and a moment of excitement when two smaller grebes appeared in the distance, but it was just the Little Grebes, which had returned to the Long Water from the Round Pond.

There were five Teal on the Long Water, all female.

A pair of Tufted Ducks rested on a disused Coot nest.

The Black Swan was having a peaceful time at the Vista today, and came over to be fed.

A Mute Swan waited in the queue at the boat house snack bar.

A Greylag Goose played with a dead leaf.

Two young Herring Gulls played with conkers a few yards apart on the edge of the Serpentine. (For non-British viewers, a conker is a horse chestnut seed.) Young gulls love playing with toys, and round things that roll are their favourite.

A Herring Gull chased a Grey Heron up the Serpentine.

The marble fountain in the Italian Garden is partly blocked and the flow is reduced to a trickle. A Black-Headed Gull seized the opportunity to take an invigorating footbath.

A Cormorant on the Long Water turned a perch round so that it could swallow it head first to avoid being scratched by its spiny dorsal fin.

A Grey Wagtail hunted along the edge of the Serpentine near the Lido restaurant.

There was a Pied Wagtail just along the shore.

A Carrion Crow admired the flowers on the restaurant terrace.

In a sunny interval, Starlings lined up at the Dell restaurant, hoping some people would come out on the terrace.

But it was dark and raining when I photographed this Rose-Ringed Parakeet on Buck Hill, chewing a rowan fruit in a typically messy way.

A Redwing waited in the next tree.


  1. Was the Swan given anything to reward its orderly behaviour while queing?

    The appeal of rolling things must be universal: from young children to young gulls.

    1. One of the girls in the snack bar is feeding the swan, but it has to wait for its turn like any other customer.

      When Herring Gulls invent the wheel, they'll rule the world.

    2. Wonder if that swan had just seen the day's news picture of the Leda fresco uncovered in Pompeii, and thought hey, anything goes now? Jim

    3. Looking at that painting, I was struck by the smallness of the swan. If I were the king of the gods, I think I might have managed something a bit bigger.