Saturday 20 April 2019

There are now eight eggs in the Coots' nest at the Dell restaurant.

The Coots nesting under the bridge have decorated their nest with a pink flower. The structure includes an old hat.

On a warm day, a Coot enjoyed a cooling shower under a fountain in the Italian Garden.

Two Cormorants on the posts at Peter Pan were panting to keep cool.

Speaking of hats, the Mute Swans' nest at the boathouse is an uncertain affair and some of the branches have been dragged off into the water, but the hat is a permanent fixture.

The Egyptian goslings on the Serpentine are now a bit larger, but by no means out of danger from gulls. However, there have been no casualties in the past two days.

I couldn't see the Great Crested Grebes at the nest at the east end of the island. But suddenly one shot into view to guard the nest as a Greylag Goose came down the narrow space behind the baskets.

The first time I passed the Grey Herons' nest, only one of the young birds was in it, and the other was out of sight somewhere on the island. So they are beginning to recover their former adventurous spirit. But when I came past later, it had returned to the nest. As long as their parents keep feeding them they have no reason to leave.

The top nest on the south side of the island often has a heron in it, but it's still unclear whether it's being used as a nest by a pair. It does seem to be getting larger, as if they were bringing twigs to it.

One-legged gulls are quite common, and seem to survive well. There was a one-legged Black-Headed Gull on the Long Water which came back year after year.

The female Little Owl in the lime tree near the Henry Moore sculpture was out, but is beginning to vanish into the new leaves.

A Starling gathered nest material near the Dell.

One of the nesting pair of Mistle Thrushes near the Serpentine Gallery was down on the grass.

A Long-Tailed Tit carried an insect to its nestlings.

The Coal Tit at the bridge was on a blossoming branch, so it had to put up with being photographed again before I fed it.


  1. I'd really give much to know the reason for the fascination with old hats.

    I wonder if birds can be traumatized by the death of a sibling. Ravens certainly are. Those two remaining Herons look as if they had lost for time being their desire for exploration.

    Hope the Gull will be fine. I know they are resilient little critters, but it is still a pity to see them like that.

    1. At least there is no mystery about the sudden availability of hats. The strong winds last month will have seen to that.

      I have also been wondering about the state of mind of those two young herons. They really did seem dejected, and I don't think I was projecting it on to them because I was sad too.