Sunday 27 September 2020

 A Carrion Crow excavated fallen leaves from a hole in the concrete edge of the Serpentine, looking for insects. All it found was a feather.

A Grey Wagtail and a Dunnock foraged together on the edge of the lake at the Dell restaurant. A line of large planters on the edge of the terrace shields them from the chattering diners.

Goldcrests flitted about in the holly tree next to the bridge. The will have to work their hardest to stay alive when winter comes and the supply of insects diminishes. They've been lucky in having several consecutive mild winters, and the population is large now, but only a few survive a prolonged frosty spell.

One of the resident Mistle Thrushes rattled at a Magpie near the Dell. The migrant thrushes haven't arrived yet.

A family of Magpies squawked and bustled about in a catalpa tree.

Rose-Ringed Parakeets chewed bits off the soft travertine marble of the Henry Moore sculpture at the Vista. They can get grit off the paths, but that is granite chips and doesn't supply them with the calcium they need.

A chilly autumn day didn't stop Starlings from enjoying a splash at the edge of the lake ...

... nor Feral Pigeons from flirting.

A Black-Headed Gull waited by one of the air bubblers in the Long Water, hoping that it would bring up something edible.

There are now a lot of Cormorants on both lakes. It has been a good year for fish, and the Cormorants know it.

A Great Crested Grebe fished under the willow tree near the bridge, a place that Cormorants can't reach because they are too big to swim between the submerged branches.

There are ten teenage cygnets on the two lakes, from four broods. Eight of them came together when someone started feeding the birds near the bridge. It was a fairly peaceful scene ...

... though one of them raised its wings in annoyance at the squabbling Coots.

A pair of Shovellers came up near the Italian Garden. I think there are still only four on the lake.

A small insect trotted briskly across the balustrade at the top of the Dell. From its shape and long antennae I thought it might be a species of lacewing, but its wings seem too opaque.

Update: Jim has identified it as a species of Caddis fly -- an order, Trichoptera, related to the Lepidoptera, butterflies and moths.


  1. The insect appears to be a caddisfly. 'Not quite a moth' but they are the order of extant insects most closely related to the moths and butterflies. Jim

  2. We had an arsonist gull yesterday and now we have a crow archaeologist, which, true to fashion, didn't find what it was looking for.

    Crossing all my fingers and all my toes for the Goldcrests. Is it getting cold already?

    1. It's not really cols, not quite down to single figures yet. But somehow it always feel colder than it is in this grey soggy land.

  3. Might be my system but might be blogger. I'm losing the first photo or two every blog??

  4. Replies
    1. That's odd. Although the new Blogger interface is buggy and hard to use, the eventual result seems to be normal. Is it only still photographs that are disappearing, or videos, or both?

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