Monday 3 August 2020

The Hobbies have returned to the park after several years' absence. There is a pair and one young one. This picture of an adult is the best I could manage today, but I hope to do better.

A young Sparrowhawk perched in a plane tree near the Old Police House. This is at least the second year running that the resident pair have bred.

The young Little Owl could be seen in one of the usual lime trees on Buck Hill.

Ahmet Amerikali photographed a female Great Spotted Woodpecker nearby. We've already had a picture of their offspring.

A Jackdaw sunbathed near the leaf yard.

A Carrion Crow had been bathing in the Serpentine, and perched on a deckchair to dry.

Stock Doves came down to the Long Water for a drink.

A Blackbird ate blackberries.

Two rival Black-Headed Gulls chased each other along the edge of the Serpentine.

There are now two Grey Herons in the Dell. This young one has recently taken up residence. So far they haven't started fighting.

Great Crested Grebe parents show great tolerance of the incessant squeaking of their chicks, which only stops for a few seconds after one is given a fish.

This Moorhen chick under the willow near the bridge is one of four.

The Black Swan has been at the east end of the Serpentine for several days. It was calling musically.

The Egyptian Goose family at the Round Pond have become hopelessly addicted to bread, and chase anyone who gives them this unhealthy stodge. A drink is necessary afterwards to wash it down.  There are notices all round the pond asking people not to give bread to the waterfowl, but of course they take no notice.

The marble fountain in the Italian Garden seems to have broken down, not for the first time since the new pump and pipework were put in. At least the absence of its usual coat of green algae means that you can appreciate the finely carved tritons under the bowl. Someone had cheered them up with a bunch of helium balloons.

Tom got a striking picture of a stoat at Rainham Marshes.


  1. The only time I've ever been to Diss (they have a large pond, called the Mere, with many waterfowl in the middle of town) , I found the charity shops around the Mere were selling little bags of Duck food,to prevent the feeding of bread. You can buy it relatively cheaply online, in rather larger portions.

    1. Tends to called 'Swan and other waterfowl food'. If that's your bag, feeding them.

    2. The sold this stuff in the boathouse shop, but that's closed at the moment. Its main feature is that the pellets float, making it easier for ducks to get at them.

    3. If the list of ingredients is to be believed, it's better than bread, at least.

  2. I imagine the babies' piping must get on the parent Grebe's nerves, but isn't it an endearing sound!

    I can't get over how surprisingly tuneful and musical the voice of Black Swans is. I almost wish ancient Greeks had had the chance to hear one - the mythical swansong would then be grounded on an actual fact. Although I suspect they'd keel over at the notion of a **black** swan.

    1. I wish I could have shown Juvenal one and watched his face when he saw it.