Monday 17 December 2018

The female Little Owl at the Queen's Temple dozed in the sunshine.

When I went by a second time, the male owl was on a branch, but I was 200 yards away, too far for a picture. When I went closer he retreated into the hole and stared at me suspiciously with one eye. You can see how he is smaller and squarer than his comfortably round mate.

There was a Peregrine on the barracks tower, with the remains of a Feral Pigeon visible on the ledge.

A Starling shone in the sunlight as it searched for worms and insects among the dead leaves.

A Carrion Crow was also foraging, and turned over an oak leaf to see if there was anything underneath.

The Chaffinch in the Rose Garden waited in the sun-dappled shade for some seeds to fall out of the feeder.

Chaffinches have a tendency to sit down, as if their little legs were tired of carrying them. Many of the Chaffinches in the park suffer from the virus disease that attacks their feet, but this one is clear of it so far.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits crossed the bridge on their way round the lake.

I'm still trying to get a video of the Nuthatch in the leaf yard feeding from my hand. But only one of the pair will, and the one that appeared today was the other one.

A Black-Headed Gull stepped daintily across the small waterfall in the Dell.

It was in no danger of being washed away, because actually not much water goes over the fall, which is artfully constructed with a level concrete shelf that has rocks set in it to make it look natural. You see a lot of splash for very little flow. The whole Dell is a skilful imitation of a natural scene.

Most of Hyde Park is lit with picturesque and dim gas lamps, but there is a modern lamp post at the dangerous sharp zigzag outside the Magazine, a scene of frequent car crashes. A Grey Heron finds this a convenient vantage point for keeping an eye on the rats in the shrubbery.

Four Cormorants fished together on the Long Water.

A pair of Pochards preened beside the Serpentine, momentarily disturbed by an intefering Coot.

Two male swans, on the left, tried to impress a female.

A rollerblader practised a very complicated move, almost got it right, but knocked over two cones and clapped his hands in annoyance. Never mind, it will be perfect after a few more tries.


  1. My unncoordinated self cannot fathom the level of coordination those rollerskating skills require.

    The Little Owl looks blissful in her splendid imitation of Queen Victoria. Its mate though appears to be impersonating a house cat stalking its owner.

    Starlings are such extraordinary creatures. Underneath their common appearance they possess almost otherwordldy features: their iridiscence, and their uncanny mimicking abilities.

    1. I am still not sure whether this pair of owls is the same one that used to be in the nearby sweet chestnut tree. If so, the behaviour of the male is odd. He used to be the calmest of owls, who would just stare at photographers as the rushed around a pointed large black things at him.