Friday 20 December 2019

Heavy rain and an outflow blocked with dead leaves made the Serpentine rise and flood the pavement on the shore.

Two Tufted Ducks swan along the submerged kerb.

It made a perfect hunting ground for a Pied Wagtail, which took advantage of it.

There was a large warning notice for a tiny flood on the shore of the Long Water, which a runner leapt over easily.

As another shower began, two Egyptian Geese had a brief fight. The winner chased the other one off and returned to his mate to celebrate his triumph.

Four Coots threatened each other, heads lowered and wings raised to make themselves look as large as possible.

A solitary Pochard drake on the Serpentine ignored the forty-odd Pochards on the other side of the bridge.

A Cormorant at the island was already in breeding plumage, with spiky white head feathers and a white flash on its side.

A Grey Heron collected twigs for its nest.

Blackbirds like rain, and this one foraged happily in the wet leaves.

Little Owls don't, as their feathers aren't waterproof. The male near the Albert Memorial sheltered in his hole, standing in a place where the crack in the ceiling didn't drip on him.

A Robin struck an attitude on a wet twig.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits worked its way along the edge of the Serpentine.

Coal Tits are camera shy, and this one panicked at the last moment when coming to take a pine nut from my hand. But it rallied and took two. A bigger and bolder Great Tit also came down.


  1. A very handsome Cormorant. I wonder if one day they will attempt to breed there? We had our first (successful) breeding this year in Richmond Park, nesting in the small heronry.

    1. That’s good news about the Cormorants in Richmond Park. I hope they breed again next year

    2. I'd heard about Cormorants moving inland to breed, but Richmond Park is a surprise.

  2. I wish we could see what happened next after the menacing Coot picture. I bet they broke into a four-part fight (a fighting quartet?).

    Love the Tufted Ducks floating happily along the submerged kerb. Few things remain as obstacles for long for birds.

    The concern Park officers have for their visitors is endearing. Although perhaps putting up such a large sign to warn about a tiny puddle is a bit of overkill.

    1. Coots fight first and threaten each other later, a very strange way of going about things. They had a brief flurry but I didn't get the camera pointed at them in time, so I photographed the threat display instead.

      A strangely blank warning triangle with a word but no symbol. I wished I had had a black magic marker so that I could have drawn a schematic Noah's Ark in the space.

  3. What a steady hand you have. Always good to carry a permanent marker, also in case of hamfisted apostrophies.

    1. And some Tipp-Ex, I suppose, so that you can both add and delete on both light and dark backgrounds. I've read of a society, I think called The Apostrophisers, who go around with adhesive stickers of apostrophes and blanks to fix defective notices.

    2. I do get exercised by mistakes, but not enough I suppose to join such an outfit. Good thinking though, the Tipp-Ex.

    3. and there, I forgot a (debatable) comma. Or two. Blimey.