Friday 15 March 2019

A Coot tried to make a reed stick against a post nest to the bridge. The attempt is not quite as silly as it looks, because there is a chain just below water level. But a nest here would have to be started with zigzag twigs that would catch on the chain.

The Coot nest at Peter Pan shows that it's possible. But of course both nests are idiotically sited in places where hungry Herring Gulls gather.

The Great Crested Grebes' nest in the reed bed on the Long Water is permanently occupied, and it seems probable that there are eggs in it.

The grebes at the east end of the island have now built their nest up to a good size, but show no signs of wanting to sit on it yet.

Another pair rested together on the choppy waves.

The pair of Lesser Black-Backed Gulls that are usually together at the Lido crossed the lake and trotted around affectionately together.

A Mute Swan charged down the Serpentine, overtaking a Black-Headed Gull.

The swans nesting beside the boat house were ruffled by the strong wind and visited by an inquisitive Coot. Coots like swans' nests because these get infested with insects that a Coot can eat,  but they are also wary of their large and violent occupants.

Another pair of swans were looking at a nest site on the west side of the Long Water, not a good place because there is a family of foxes in the bushes.

A young fox, barely more than a cub, emerged from the bushes and accepted some peanuts. It will have to learn to be more wary of humans. The local Carrion Crows disapproved of it.

A crow preened in the new leaves of a willow.

Another crow dropped by the Bluebird Boats snack bar for some coffee.

The young Grey Herons in the nest on the island are visibly larger every day.

A Starling on a windswept twig started to sing but was drowned out by the shrieks of Rose-Ringed Parakeets.

An unexpected visitor dropped in on a selfie.

Park gardeners and staff planted a tree as a memorial to Mel, a gardener who sadly has died. The tree is a sweet chestnut, so it should be a long lasting reminder -- some of the chestnuts in Kensington Gardens are 428 years old.


  1. In St James’s Park the Tawny Owlet and mother were visible, firstly perching right next to each other and later on separate branches.
    A Black Swan pair had started nesting on the island at the Buckingham Palace end. The male was chasing away the local geese. It is a poor choice of nesting site because this is where the Mute Swans nest. It can’t be long before the Mutes start investigating the site for this year’s nest.

    1. Thanks for the information. So few places for swans to nest in either park. But perhaps it's just as well, as their numbers are increasing steadily, and the last lot of Black cygnets got eaten quickly.

  2. 'Dropped in' is right: wonder what dropped next. The young fox looked to be in good nick; a lot of them are in a sorry state. But agreed, far too trusting. Nice to see , though.
    Planting a tree is a lovely memorial for a person. (my late husband has -so far- 2 apple and 1 mulberry to his name).

    1. My father has a hornbeam planted for him. But he also planted hundreds of trees himself, which are perhaps a better memorial.

    2. That is a lovely and loving tribute to your father. I am sure there are special spots in heaven reserved for people who plant trees, because they are Life.

  3. That fox is a full grown adult that looks to be a few years old. Cubs will only be around a month old and wont be above ground until the 1st week in may roughly. People think foxes are bigger than they are, but i have seen some very small adults.

    1. Thank you. This is a pretty small fox, which is why I thought it was one of last year's cubs.