Saturday 20 June 2020

A pair of House Sparrows appeared near Queen's Gate. Neil had filmed one near the Queen's Temple several months ago, and later I heard a male singing near the bridge. Probably this is the same pair. The male was only dimly visible through the leaves, but the female came into view for a few seconds before flying off.

I've filmed this Song Thrush in the Flower Walk  several times before, but its cheerful song is irresistible.

The Reed Warblers in the reed bed near the Diana fountain were making quite a noise and flying about, and it was clear that young ones were being fed. One adult showed briefly on a stem.

One of the young Pied Wagtails sprinted up the edge at the Lido.

This teenage Magpie near the bridge hoped to be fed, but its parent gave it a telling-off.

The Little Owl was in her favourite alder tree.

This young Grey Heron recently arrived on the lake still has to learn the patience of an adult. In a good spot for fishing it yawned and shufflesd, and finally gave up and went away.

The Common Tern was back on the Serpentine, though it only passed by me once.

The dominant pair of Mute Swans on the Long Water finally have cygnets. Looking across the lake I could see three, but there may well be more to come.

There was a Canada Goose with one gosling at the Vista. They are the ones that nested on the tern raft and then moved to the Serpentine, since when one of the goslings has been lost. The mother squabbled over a bit of bread.

An Egyptian gosling sprawled at length on the edge of the Serpentine.

A brief clip of two Great Crested Grebes fighting and one of them chasing the other away. The victor was one of the grebes nesting at the west end of the island, keen to hold on to its territory.

A Moorhen climbed to the top of the reed bed east of the Lido.

A Small Tortoiseshell butterfly perched on a grass stem on Buck Hill.

Honeybees on a Creeping Thistle ...

... and a Meadow Cranesbill. Thanks to Mario for exact identification of both.

A pretty picture by Tom of a Pyramidal Orchid. Not sure where he found it.


  1. Phone upps are helpful, but have their limitations. The "Californian Thistle" is called Creeping Thistle in the UK (Cirsium arvense); and the crane's-bill looks to me more like Meadow Crane's-bill (Geranium pratense) rather than Wood Crane's-bill (Geranium sylvaticum)

  2. A further observation of the house sparrows is heartening. Looks like they're sticking around and, fingers crossed, just the vanguard.

    1. But if ever the government stops panicking and traffic returns to normal, up goes the air pollution that probably did for the sparrows in the first place. The recently introduced restrictions on the more polluting vehicles might get them through. Fingers crossed.

  3. So excited about the sparrows! Hope hope hope they'll stick along.

    Please tell me that Grebe fights are bloodless...

    1. Yes, grebe fights are as bloodless as sumo wrestling. The object of the frantic tussle is to tip the other grebe over. When it goes down it has to submit, and does.

  4. Last year there was a pyramid orchid behind the railings in the long grass on the lake side where the tourists feed the parakeets. Haven't been there much this season because of the crowds. The trick with lockdown has been to find walks where there are fewer others...

    1. Thank you. I've never seen an orchid of any kind in the park. The area you mention has had large amounts of semi-rotted leafmould dumped on it, ostensibly to keep down weeds though actually the stuff was full of viable seeds and had the opposite effect, and as a result new plant species may have been introduced.