Sunday 6 October 2019

The dominant Mute Swan on the Long Water was in an aggressive mood. Here he is at Peter Pan with his cygnet, pushing out a rival.

Unfortunately he had already chased another swan ashore at the Vista, and the stranded bird, a female, had fled along the path to Peter Pan and was stuck there, unable to go into the water and being threatened by loose dogs. It was time to stop photographing and try the rescue the swan. With the aid of some people I managed to chivvy her back along the path to the Vista, though she was most reluctant to go, and had to be more or less pushed along for 80 yards. When it got there, another male swan was giving her nasty looks and she didn't want to return to the water. But she had to go back, so I shoved her in and the poor bird was promptly chased away.

She flew to the bridge and swam back on to the Serpentine, humiliated and angry but at least safe.

Near the island, the Great Crested Grebes were at the unceasing task of feeding their three chicks.

The Moorhens in the Dell have made another temporary nest.

One of the chicks was washing and preening.

A Grey Heron came to the edge of the Lido restaurant terrace hoping to find some scraps, but found itself the centre of attention with no food available, and left.

There are very few Pied Wagtails around at the moment. They don't migrate, but at times they disappear to some unknown place and you only see one every few days.

A Carrion Crow amused itself by paddling in a puddle.

The yew trees are full of berries, providing a feast for Song Thrushes.

A Blackbird picked up fallen berries in the Dell.

One of the Great Tits near the bridge was tired of being photographed and wanted to be fed.

When a flock of Long-Tailed Tits is on the move, it often pauses for a time in a hawthorn tree. There seem to be more insects in a hawthorn than in most other trees, perhaps attracted by the berries.

There is a large crop of what look like Field Mushrooms around the Henry Moore sculpture. Disappointingly, they are some other species and have white gills, and are inedible. Update: Mario has identified it as White Dapperling, Leucoagaricus leucothites.


  1. Thank you for rescuing the poor swan!

    1. Wish I had the strength and agility to grab and carry a swan.

  2. The fungus: Leucoagaricus leucothites, white dapperling

  3. Ralph once again saving the day. No brute stength is needed where intelligence, clearness of thought, and swift decision will suffice.

    I think your missing Wagtails are turning up here! I've seen a few already, even if we are still at the 30ºC mark.

    1. At least some of our Pied Wagtails stay here the year round. We have several permanent populations of migratory birds, such as Mistle Thrushes and Blackcaps.