Monday 11 November 2019

The female Little Owl near the Albert Memorial was back in the old hole that the pair have been using for years. They've been having trouble with squirrels here, and may not be able to keep it, but they have another hole in the next tree that they can use.

I couldn't find the male Little Owl near the Henry Moore sculpture today, as there was a Magpie threateningly perched on a branch in front of his usual place. But here is a fine picture of him taken yesterday by Mike Harris.

At the bottom of the Hill, a Jay deftly shelled a peanut.

A Rose-Ringed Parakeet stood out against the red leaves of an American oak near the leaf yard.

Two Grey Herons looked out from the moored boats at the island.

Two Herring Gulls in the Diana fountain enclosure did the worm dance side by side. It brought up a worm for one of them.

A young Herring Gull played with a paper cup bearing the words 'The Important Thing' and 'Soya'.

A Black-Headed Gull investigated a bit of cardboard.

Some rowing boats at Bluebird Boats were upside down on the platform being jet washed. A Herring Gull and a Black-Headed Gull checked the algae for little edible creatures.

A Moorhen looked for the same thing in a carpet of fallen leaves moved by the ripples on the lake.

One of the teenage Great Crested Grebes was fishing under the powerboats with a parent.

The Black Swan was still on the Round Pond.

This is one of the four circular reliefs of children in the Italian Garden. It takes a little time to realise what's going on in this one: it's a winter scene on ice. The child on the left is slipping and falling over, or possibly through the ice to judge by his desperate expression. The boy in the middle, on skates, is pushing a girl in a boat-shaped sledge.

In Norway this traditional sledge is called a pulk. Here is an old picture from the Norwegian National Library showing a Sami (Lapp) family with one.

Mark Williams is cultivating the friendship of a Blackbird in St James's Park by feeding it sultanas.

Here is his picture of a Blue Tit coming to his hand.


  1. What lovely and dreamy eyes does the Little Owl near the Henry Moore sculpture has.

    I wonder if the Herring Gull that got the worm was the more convincing dancer of the two, or it was just lucky.

    1. The second Little Owl really has made an effort to look as sweet as possible.

      With two Herring Gulls pattering away, worms can come up anywhere near, so it was just a matter of luck that the one on the left got a worm while I was watching.

  2. Lovely image of the RN Parakeet against the red leaves. Just back from a week's birding in southern Spain + around Malaga instead of this species there were many Monk Parakeets. They did start to colonise here but Defra got rid of them before they increased too much.

    1. It's probably too late to do anything about the RR Parakeets here even if anyone wanted to.

    2. Monk Parakeets are a real nuisance and a problem in Málaga. They have no predator, as Gulls are not too interested in them, and there are few raptors to deal with them.

    3. The Monk Parakeets will probably get predators in time, as happened here. Now they are taken by Peregrines, Sparrowhawks, Hobbies (surprisingly), Tawny Owls and Carrion Crows -- and probably others I haven't seen at work.