Sunday 9 August 2020

There were calls from the Sparrowhawks' plane tree, and the adult male soared out over the park.

A young Wood Pigeon kept well in cover in a tree underneath.

A Wood Pigeon beside the Long Water bolted down blackberries as fast as it was able.

There are still plenty of berries for the Blackbirds in the rowan tree on Buck Hill, but I wonder whether they will last long enough to feed the migrant thrushes when they arrive in the autumn.

Mark Williams got a good shot of the father of the Greenfinch family beside the Long Water. Now that they have stopped singing they are hard to find, just one green thing among thousands of green leaves.

These Carrion Crows were only a few feet from the little stream in the Dell, where the water is clean and well aerated by the waterfall. But they preferred to drink out of a muddy puddle. This seems to be a general preference among the birds in the park. Perhaps the water from the borehole that feeds the lake tastes horrible. I'm not going to try it.

A Grey Heron in the Italian Garden fountains stared hungrily at a planter where there were some small Moorhen chicks.

One of the parents was in a different planter with an older chick, apparently unaware of the danger.

The Coot on the enormous nest at the Dell restaurant turned over the eggs.

The Great Crested Grebe chicks from the nest near the bridge were together practising fishing ...

... and the greeting ceremony.

We haven't had a picture of the single Mute Swan cygnet on the Long Water for some time. It's now quite big.

Blondie the Egyptian Goose enjoyed a splash and a scratch and a shake.

A flock of Tufted Ducks stayed in the shade of the island.

Sunday afternoon is when the exercise drill instructors marshal their victims in the park and make them do painful things.


  1. My old sensei would have hit everyone with a stick in the small of the back to make them drop their butts...

    Does Blondie recognize you? Would she come to the hand if you offered her food?

    1. What better way to increase the misery?

      There are so many Egyptian Geese that feeding any of them would cause a mob to gather. I don't think Blondie recognises me.

    2. You'd like the way we trained abs, then. Your partner would punch you in the abs as you lifted your torso off the ground; if you weren't clenching the muscles hard enough sooner or later you'd end up puking all over your partner.

    3. I seem to remember that Houdini met his end in that way.

  2. Most of the cygnets born during lockdown have grown so swiftly...wonder how long do they stay with their parents....
    Blondie's video is so sweet...
    The sparrowhawk pic looks exciting...what a dive...

    1. The Sparrowhawk isn't diving. Birds photographed overhead may appear at any angle in the picture. For serious high-speed diving watch a Peregrine. They have been measured at over 200 mph going straight down (and yes, they can pull out of the dive).