Sunday 28 June 2020

At the end of June the birds have almost stopped singing. Even the voluble Song Thrush in the Flower Walk had fallen silent.

A Greenfinch in a holly tree beside the Long Water made itself noticed by twittering a bit.

The Reed Warblers in the reed bed at the east end of the Serpentine have bred, and there was a good deal of calling and dashing around. The young ones are less shy than adults, and if they come out at the front they don't flee instantly when you pick up a camera.

Several young Pied Wagtails could be seen on the edge of the Round Pond.

The Black-Headed Gulls are now returning in earnest, and there were twenty on the posts at Peter Pan.

The new Grey Heron in the Dell looked oddly small in front of the gigantic leaves of Chilean Rhubarb.

The west end of the Lido swimming area is a safe place to rest. Both the Serpentine Mute Swan families use it -- this is the swan with two cygnets -- and so do the Egyptian Geese.

The Black Swan, which has been sitting around droopily while going through the boring and painful business of moulting, was now looking recovered and active again. I haven't seen its new wing feathers and don't know whether it can actually fly yet -- probably not, as it was a windy day and that stimulates swans to try out their regrown wings.

A Mallard with three ducklings, another with two, and a pair of Coots with four chicks all came to the waterfront at Peter Pan hoping to be fed.

One of the Mallard ducklings at the Vista is blond.

The wind it had blown away the second Coot nest built against the balcony of the Dell restaurant, for the second time this year. However, the very large and solidly made first nest remains intact and has been built up higher than ever.

The nest at the outflow, tucked into a corner of the masonry, is also still there.

The pair who lost their nest will probably try again. This pair near the Italian Garden were with their third brood after losing two.

Both sets of young Great Crested Grebes on the Long Water were in good shape, but neither was in a place where I could get a worthwhile picture. The sitting grebe at the east end of the island idly rearranged some leaves on the nest.

The shelter on Buck Hill is used for all kinds of things, on a first come first served basis. Mostly it's boxing and martial arts, so a bit of dance is a relief.

A picture from St James's Park by Joan Chatterley. The Black Swans on the Pelican Rocks have made their nest site more comfortable with algae and water weed, and there are now two eggs.


  1. That Greenfinch is looking exceedingly fine. A lovely study of green.

    I wonder if regrowing feathers itch less in Black Swans than they do in Mute Swans. They appear to be more composed and less frantic.

    I would have supposed that touting for food would be beneath the dignity of a Coot. Pouncing on it, or forcefully taking it from some other bird, sure. But then again even swans are accomplished beggars, so...

    1. If someone throws a bit of bread into the water on the edge of the Serpentine in the places where Coots hang around, there is a black implosion as hundreds of Coots race to the spot.

  2. Love the baby blond mallard and the greenfinch is gorgeous...

    1. Perhaps it's too much to hope that the blond duckling will survive. The park is a terrible place for ducklings.