Thursday, 23 May 2019

Paul shot this remarkable video of a young Great Spotted Woodpecker calling and being fed on the bank of the Thames upstream from Hammersmith Bridge.

A Jay washed in the Serpentine ...

... and flew up to a branch to dry itself.

A young Great Tit waited on a yew twig for its parents to bring food.

A young Long-Tailed Tit did the same in a hawthorn.

The Little Owl near the Albert Memorial was out on a branch.

A young Grey Heron posed in front of a patch of red flowers in the Dell.

The three Mallard ducklings at Peter Pan are still in good order, and noticeably larger.

The Mute Swans from the little island in the Long Water still have one cygnet.

There was a remarkable number of swans on the Long Water. Virginia counted 88 this morning. Two rival males circled each other menacingly as an Egyptian Goose looked on from a post.

The Coot family from the small boathouse relaxed on the shore on a warm sunny afternoon.

The Coot nest on the post near Peter Pan has three chicks in it, I think the first ever to hatch on this dangerously exposed site. Two Lesser Black-Backed Gulls and a Herring Gull were waiting on the posts for an opportunity to swoop. There is another even more threatened nest on a post beyond them.

The Coots at the bridge now have five eggs in their restored nest.

The carp in the Italian Garden fountains can't be more than seven years old, since the pools were drained during renovation work in 2012 and all fish now there arrived accidentally as eggs stuck to the feet of birds. In this time they have grown to a remarkable size and some of them are two feet long.

A Buff-Tailed Bumblebee drank nectar from a flower near the Lido. Both bumblebees and Honeybees show a distinct preference the purple flowers in the park.

There was an extremely long procession of horses as a Household Cavalry regiment returned from Buckingham Palace to the Hyde Park barracks.

Tom was at Thursley Common, the home of the famous Cuckoo called Colin by the regulars, and photographed him flying off a twig.

He also got a fine picture of a Dartford Warbler there.


  1. How awkward a tuba looks on a horse.(all the king's/queen's horses?).Nice to see a cuckoo, but I wish people wouldn't always alliterate in their naming. Is that how fish arrive in ponds? I wonder if that's how snails arrive on my 4th floor balcony- as eggs on birds' feet. Or in the soil, I expect.

    1. I would not want to be a drum horse. The stalwart creatures must endure a long training to enable them to stand the terrible noise.

  2. I wonder why the Swans should consider going in circles a menacing display. They are as weird as they are beautiful.

    Glad to see Colin doing so well. He must be quite the spectacle.

    How noisy the young Woodpecker is!

    Such a lovely picture of a lovely bird,the Dartford Warbler. We call them curruca rabilarga, long-tailed warbler, which I think is a very good name.

    Glad to see the very pretty Bumblebee!

    1. Colin the cuckoo has returned to Thursley for several years. People feed him and he is now said to be ridiculously tame.

      The Dartford Warbler has now disappeared from the area around Dartford in Kent, so what was a merely a silly name for an international bird is now utterly inappropriate.