Wednesday 25 December 2019

It was a beautiful Christmas Day, and the park was crowded. As chattering families enjoyed a sunny walk beside the Serpentine, a Starling shining in the sunlight added to the chatter.

Two Robins and a pair of Blackbirds hopped around within a few feet of each other on the path in the Flower Walk, while a Song Thrush looked down from a high branch.

A gang of Magpies in a treetop plotted some audacious exploit.

A Great Tit looked out from one of the yew trees near the bridge, which oddly seems to have little brown flowers on it.

I looked for the Little Owl near the Albert Memorial, only to find that he was facing stiff competition. The tree contained a Stock Dove ...

... a Carrion Crow ...

... and a Rose-Ringed Parakeet irritably chewing a broken branch ...

... and, worst of all, there was a squirrel actually in the hole.

The same Grey Heron as on previous days was standing in the nest on the island.

Young gulls often dive to try to find sticks or stones to play with, though of course they may find a fish or something else edible. This young Herring Gull on the Serpentine dived repeatedly without finding anything, though it did take a moment to scare off a Coot.

A Cormorant stared haughtily from a post at Peter Pan.

A Tufted drake stood on a chain next to the bridge.

A visit to the Round Pond to check on the Black Swan ...

... unexpectedly discovered Blondie the Egyptian Goose, who hardly ever leaves her favourite spot beside the Serpentine. I think she was forced away by the sheer number of people on the edge of the lake. Well, she can use her immaculately preened wings to fly back when things quieten down.


  1. The new camera's pictures are absolutely excellent, sharp, vivid, and completely true to life.

    Lovely to see Blondie looking so fine. I hope she'll make it back home without further incident.

    I'd truly wish I knew what Magpies are saying to each other. Nothing to the neighbours' advantage, surely,

    1. 'A mischief of Magpies' is the technically correct, if long obsolete, term for a gathering of these birds. It gets the right idea.

    2. Love that! Mischief of Magpies, Murder of Crows, Charm of Goldfinches (my absolute favourite), Pride of Lions, Parliament of Owls ... English is a wonderful language.

    3. But these picturesque terms are almost never used. They're just a means of showing off arcane knowledge.