Wednesday 9 September 2020

The Hobby family are still in the park and were flying around the lake, mostly at a considerable altitude which made it hard to get a picture.

One of them had a dispute with a Buzzard, but these were so high that the photograph just showed a couple of dots.

A Pied Wagtail sprinted around looking for insects in the empty enclosure of the closed Diana fountain.

The Grey Wagtail was in its usual place at the top of the Dell waterfall.

A Rose-Ringed Parakeet tore up a catalpa pod to get at the seeds. The catalpa tree is known as the 'Indian Bean Tree', but the 'Indians' here are North American ones, while the parakeet is genuinely from India.

A Robin perched on a mysterious object in the Dell which may be part of an automatic watering system.

A Wren lurked in a bramble patch near the Queen's Temple.

The Grey Heron at the Dell restaurant had clearly had another run-in with the Carrion Crows, which were strutting all over the roof.

The young Great Crested Grebes on the Serpentine may be able to fish for themselves, but it doesn't stop them from constantly pestering their parents.

People have very odd ideas about how to feed the birds. Someone had dumped an entire packet of oatmeal on the edge of the Serpentine. Some Coots were mildly interested. It's better for them than bread.

The Black Swan was having a hard time with the dominant Mute Swan at the west end of the Serpentine.

On the Long Water the Mute Swans with one cygnet had reclaimed the gravel strip from the dominant pair, and the male swan was sitting exactly where their nest was. A Jackdaw came down for a drink.

Two Greylag Geese swept low over the Serpentine.

Egyptian Geese have little idea of the northern seasons, and this one had moulted very late and was only just regrowing its flight feathers.

A clump of Stonecrop next to the Big Bird statue attracted a Buff-Tailed Bumblebee ...

... and a Greenbottle fly. There is an enormous number of these flies around at the moment.

Following up yesterday's picture of the new Monkeypuzzle cones, here is a picture of the top of the same tree, showing some old dried-up male cones.

There are two other Monkeypuzzle trees here, still small. They are very slow growing and it will be years before it becomes clear whether they're male or female.


  1. Oh dear, I wish the black swan would stay clear of the aggressive mute swans. We don’t want a repeat of what happened to its predecessor

    1. But did anything serious happen to it? I thought it had just left, largely unharmed, to avoid the dominant mute swan after a face-off. Did it sustain a serious injury?

    2. Yes, the previous Black Swan had trouble with the dominant Mute Swan on the Long Water. But it left in good order along with four teenage Black Swans that had fortuitously arrived on the Round Pond a couple of months earlier, and already knew their way around London. All five went to St James's Park, where 'our' Black Swan still is, though the four moved on somewhere else after a few months.

  2. Good to see the Hobby family still about! One of the pairs near me which also successfully raised 3 youngsters were particularly aggressive seeing off other raptors including a Red Kite & a Kestrel.

    1. Two of our Hobby kids forced a Sparrowhawk down into the shelter of a tree. They punch above their weight.