Wednesday 30 October 2019

It was probably a mistake to start feeding Carrion Crows, though it's hard to resist these charming, intelligent and funny birds. One at the Lido restaurant gave me a calculating look.

But this one just landed on my head and stayed there for a minute. One shouldn't reward such behaviour, but it got the peanut it wanted.

Humans are not their only victims. A Lesser Black-Backed Gull finishing off one of the pigeon eater's kills got its wing pulled.

Three Jays waited in a hundred-yard stretch beside the Long Water. They are all back now from their autumn task of burying acorns.

A Wood Pigeon ate holly berries.

The ubiquitous Rose-Ringed Parakeets are almost invisible among the green leaves of summer, but as the leaves turn brown they become more and more conspicuous, until in winter they are glaringly obvious. In their native India they can hide in green leaves all year round.

The man with the Hyacinth Macaws is clearly tired of people admiring his beautiful birds. When it's time to take then out for their morning airing he keeps to the less frequented parts of the park, and all you see of him is his back view as he hurries away.

Ahmet Amerikali found a Great Spotted Woodpecker in a tree just to the east of the Italian Garden.

Another of his pictures, a dramatic shot of one of the younger Great Crested Grebe chicks on the Long Water being fed.

With a whole lake to drink from, not just Moorhens but all birds prefer drinking rainwater from muddy puddles. I am not going to try drinking the lake water to see what puts them off it, but it all comes from a borehole in the London clay and is likely to have a harsh alkaline taste.

A young Cormorant, still with a pale front, dried its wings while the dominant Mute Swan from the Long Water patrolled the water in front of the bridge. He had just driven a bunch of swans off his territory and didn't want them going back.

The female Egyptian Goose of the hopelessly incompetent pair in the Italian Garden has grey wings like Blondie, though slightly darker. The pair must be at least twenty years old now and, as regular readers will know, in all their time in the park they have never managed to raise a single gosling.

The forty-odd Pochards on the Long Water lurk under the bushes on the east side where you can't get a good picture of them, but one drake came over to the Vista.

In a moderate breeze, Black-Headed Gulls can hang motionless while hoping to catch the food being thrown to them.

A Black-Headed Gull made a low pass over the head of a Herring Gull on a pedalo, surprising it and making it drop the cupcake wrapper it was holding.


  1. I'd have given something to see the picture of the Crow perched on Ralph's head. The Crow would have been given all my worldly possessions too. Who can resist them?

    I wonder if the dominant Swan would have a go at the Cormorant if it was in its territory, or does it only bully other swans?

    Sometimes I think Gulls practice evil just for the fun of it.

  2. The dominant swan bullies all waterfowl from other swans down to Tufted Ducks, but I've never seen one have a go at a Cormorant. Perhaps even a swan senses that it might be unwise.