Monday 30 December 2019

A Goldcrest came out of the yew tree at the top corner of the leaf yard.

So did the very shy Coal Tit, which I am trying to feed but it won't even come down to take food from the railings.

I missed the Nuthatch, but Ahmet Amerikali got a good shot of it yesterday.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits passed through the trees on the east side of the Long Water.

The male Little Owl near the Albert Memorial came out in the morning sunlight.

The female Peregrine was on the barracks tower.

A Wood Pigeon and a Blackbird enjoyed a dip in the little pool at the top of the Dell waterfall.

A pair of Jackdaws examined a hole at the bottom of the leaf yard next to the path. I know that a pair nests here but am unsure about the location of the hole. This one looks too small.

A Carrion Crow turned over dead leaves to see if there was anything edible lurking underneath.

Two Cormorants on the Long Water dried their wings, perched on the remains of the Mute Swans' nesting island.

The Grey Herons are still attending to their nests on the island. However, this preliminary interest may go on for quite a while before they actually get down to nesting. The season doesn't matter, since they live on fish.

Young Black-Headed Gulls squabbled over a toy. It was only a leaf and the other gull could have found one, but for a gull the pleasure is in stealing.

A fine picture by David Element of a more serious gull chase: a Lesser Black-Back tries to take a crayfish from another one.

Coots fought on the Long Water just for the hell of it.

A pair of Moorhens amicably ate each others' parasites.

A Pochard drake wasn't doing much, but looked fine in the sunlight.

The Black Swan cruised on the Round Pond. I think its eyes are turning redder and will soon be the startlingly bright adult colour.


  1. So the Black Swan is ruling the pond before coming into full adulthood. I wonder why it was so meek and well-behaved at the beginning. Perhaps the rest of mute swans have been a bad influence on it. Incidentally, has any other swan species ever spent some time at the park?

    What a lovely picture of the Goldcrest. I nearly gasped.

    Glad to see Coots still uphold their most inveterate traditions.

    1. The Mute Swans on the Round Pond are all at the bottom of the pecking order in the park, with the more dominant or ambitious ones on the main lake. So they are more easily dominated than usual for their species.

      Both Bewick's and Whooper Swans have visited the park in the past --they're on the list which started in 1889 -- but I have no idea of when they came. There is a small British population of both which fly into places like Slimbridge and Abbotsbury Swannery every winter from their summer residence in Siberia.

  2. Lovely shot of the Goldcrest. You were blessed with great light yesterday.

    1. The gentle winter sunlight is gorgeous when you can get it.