Friday 20 September 2019

The Spotted Flycatchers are still here, taking a very long pause on their way to Africa but there are lots of insects for them to eat. One perched on the dead tree where the Grey Heron often stands.

The other was farther away in a treetop eating a wasp.

The local Wren is used to people leaning over the railings with cameras. Ahmet Amerikali got a good picture of her.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits passed overhead.

The Coal Tit came out to be fed. She hates being photographed, but sometimes has to bow to the inevitable.

A Blue Tit looked for insects in a rowan tree on Buck Hill.

Another interesting picture from Ahmet: surprisingly, it seems to be a Hobby -- the first one seen in the park this year, and a Hobby was only seen once last year. They used to nest here, but have left for some reason.

A Great Spotted Woodpecker called from an oak tree near Queen's Gate.

A Starling shone in the sunlight on the edge of the Serpentine.

Hand-feeding Starlings can be a painful experience, as they have sharp beaks and peck hard. The man shouldn't be giving them bread, of course, but this habit is unstoppable.

Epstein's relief of Rima on the Hudson Memorial is getting a bit neglected and has brambles growing on it. A Blackbird took advantage of this.

Anyone who has struggled through Hudson's daft best-selling romance Green Mansions will know that Rima speaks the language of birds. She is saying 'Get out of my hair.'

Ahmet got this dramatic shot of a Great Crested Grebe feeding a chick.

The grebes from the west end of the island have been displaced by a swimming event, and have moved to the other end. They had to keep close inshore to avoid being seen by the other family and chased away.

A Mute Swan splashed down on the Long Water.

A remarkable picture by David Element of a Migrant Hawker dragonfly in flight, viewed head-on.

These wasps were milling around a small spot in the Rose Garden. I really don't know what they were doing.


  1. Your female kestrel looks like a hobby! Amazing face on photo of the migrant hawker

    1. Yes, you're right, and thank you. It seems most unlikely -- see revised text above -- but if you look closely you can see the orange underpants.

  2. Drone wasps vying for a queen? Well recorded, whatever it is. Jim

    1. Yes, I was wondering about that. In these tangles it seemed that one wasp was bigger, but I couldn't be sure and it doesn't show up on the video.

  3. I would agree, after watching the movie twice, is that it's male wasps trying to mate with a new queen. Agree, well recorded!

    Good to see the Hobby- doesn't look like an adult as it hasn't got the distinctive red "trousers".

    Love David's shot of the Migrant Hawker.

    1. If you look carefully at the picture of the Hobby you can just see a trace of dull orange. But I hadn't noticed this when I put the picture up, and mistook the bird for a female Kestrel looking dark because of the strong light from above.

  4. I did notice that Ralph. I think, but not 100% sure, it may be a bird born last year. A full adult usually shows a much more obvious reddish colour.

  5. Congratulations on the splendid picture of the Hobby. Such an amazing creature!

    I think we'll make a photograph star of the Coal Tit yet.

    1. It's a shame that Hobbies no longer nest in the park. But we may get them back.