Tuesday 13 October 2020

One of the Little Owls on Buck Hill, which we haven't seen for some time, was calling from the lime tree where the young one used to perch a few months ago. I rushed over to the tree but it was full of Magpies and the owl had already retreated into a hole. Anyway, it's good to know it's still there.

Rose-Ringed Parakeets ate berries in a pyracantha bush near the bridge. They are messy feeders and drop more than they eat.

Another clung to an overhanging surface inside the Henry Moore sculpture.

A Coal Tit near the Albert Memorial is very confident and comes readily to the hand to be fed. This picture is by Neil, and so is the following video.

The bush with red leaves in the background is a Plumleaf Hawthorn or Broadleaf Cockspurthorn (Crataegus persimilis), a Canadian species grown for its autumn colours and red fruits. There was a picture of the fruits on another bush here last Friday.

A flock of Long-Tailed Tits passed down the edge of the Long Water.

Two pictures by Ahmet Amerikali from the shrubbery near the bridge: one of the very active Goldcrests ...

... and a bold Robin which you can hand feed.

The fountains in the Italian Garden are shut down for cleaning and maintenance. A Moorhen perched on a drain ...

... and a Gadwall drake emerged from feeding with bubbles on his head.

There were two Mute Swans in the pools, a male and a female. Needless to say, he was bullying her mercilessly.

He came out of the water with a nasty look in his eye.

There is a temporary fence around the marble fountain, which is where swans get out of the garden. I opened a link in the fence so that she could escape.

Greylag Geese seemed to like the taste of the leaves of a young cabbage palm (Cordyline australis) near the Round Pond. If it survives their attentions this New Zealand tree can grow up to 60 ft tall. The fruit is eaten by thrushes and other birds, which spread the seeds around, and you sometimes see wild palms growing in unexpected places.

There used to be quite a lot of Canada x Greylag Goose hybrids on the Serpentine, but they were well over 20 years old and there are only two left. They now have arthritis and walk with painful difficulty, but they are still feeding well and looking after their feathers.


  1. I shudder to ask: what did that Swan intend to do? I thought males wouldn't harm females.

    How sweet-looking, that Long Tailed Tit!

    Very glad to learn that you could hear a Little Owl. I was missing them, but was afraid to ask for fear of hearing bad news.

    1. I think the male swan would only have chased the female into some distant place where she would be stuck. She was fleeing from him already inside the garden. Being lighter than him, she can waddle faster on the ground.

      There are two audible Little Owls now, and it's only a matter of time till I can get a picture of one of them. May have to wait till the leaves fall.

  2. Some lovely shots of the tits 7 the Goldcrest.

    Good to know the Little Owl is still present on Buck Hill.

    1. The owls are leading me a merry dance at the moment but I am determined to get a picture of one of them.