Thursday, 9 July 2020

The young Carrion Crows on Buck Hill are still being fed by their parents. Here each of them gets a nut from a peanut in the shell that I gave a parent. It takes some time for young crows to learn how to shell peanuts.

This young Magpie was old enough to feed itself, but still unsuccessfully trying to get some food from a parent. In the end the adult flew away.

A Magpie was going through the contents of a rubbish bin beside the Serpentine. Probably the things were pulled out by a crow, as a Magpie wouldn't be strong enough to lift that super size cup of some dubious McDonalds concoction.

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull was having a lie down on the roof of the Dell restaurant to digest his lunch ...

... while a young Lesser Black-Back finished off the remains.

I used to think that other Lesser Black-Backs would copy the notorious gull and catch their own pigeons, and indeed a couple have tried, but none of them has succeeded. Our gull is very big for a Lesser Black-Back, clever and with the experience of years of hunting pigeons.

One of the Great Crested Grebes at the east end of the island gave a feather to a chick -- feathers help with grebes' digestion by wrapping up sharp fishbones. So far I've only seen one chick here, but it's a difficult place to see what's happening.

The two younger grebe chicks on the Long Water were idling among some Canada Geese when one of them saw a parent carrying a fish and raced off to grab it.

This Coot chick near the Lido is a couple of weeks old and has nearly lost its bright red face and orange feathers.

A contrast in colours between the blond Mallard duckling ...

... and the dark one.

There may be greater contrasts, since adult Mallards can be any shade between black and white.

A Pochard drake rested on the Serpentine.

The Mute Swans with four cygnets took them right up to the bridge. It would be a bad idea to go beyond it, since there are two pairs of swans with cygnets on the Long Water which might attack the interlopers.

A young Pied Wagtail at the Round Pond -- thanks to Mark Williams for this picture.

And another fine picture by Paul from Richmond Park: the two young Kestrels from the nest in the dead oak, now teenagers.

The Purple Loosestrife in the Italian Garden fountain pools is a magnet for bees of several species.


  1. Today while I was invigilating yet another exam a young magpie kept begging and pestering its parents near by the window. It took all my willpower not to stand up and take a look - I hope the naughty bird, knowing they are easily bribed, wasn't in cahoots with my students to distract my attention.

    1. The young birds do make an insistent racket, enough to distract any student trying to remember the paradigm of βαίνω.

    2. Magpies are more likely to remember it than this year's crop of students, sadly. I should perhaps have the magpies take the exam in their stead.

    3. Of course, that's what they're shrieking in the trees: ἔβην, βῆθι, βῶ, βαίην, βῆναι, βάς!

  2. I simply adore the bees video... buzzing away, so lovely and lively..:)))

    1. Those clumps of purple loosestrife have now seeded themselves all over the park. It's pretty but invasive.