Sunday, 8 November 2020

The Black Swan can dominate the low-status Mute Swans on the Round Pond. But when it flies down to the more spacious Serpentine or the Long Water it often gets beaten up by the higher-status swans, and then returns for an easier life on the pond.

Greylag Geese on the edge of the Serpentine saw a dog coming and prepared to flee into the water.

This is the female of the first pair of Egyptian Geese to come into the park more than twenty years ago. She seems to have been getting paler over the years, and her wings are now as grey as Blondie's. She is very tame but I've never been able to warm to her, as she has been such a terrible mother and invariably lets her goslings be eaten by gulls and crows.

A Gadwall drake picked small creatures off the surface of the lake, and then came into the edge to graze on algae.

The male Great Crested Grebe from the pair that nest at the east end of the island has very pale winter plumage. There's a good deal of variation in colour between individuals.

A Coot ripped green leaves off the reed stems and ate them. Many water birds like reeds, which makes these hard to grow and the organised reed beds in the lake have nets round them -- but the Coots always get in anyway.

A Moorhen had no trouble evicting a Black-Headed Gull from a post ...

... but another Black-Headed Gull was boldly chasing a Carrion Crow. I think the crow was leading it on for fun.

Gulls collected as sunset approached to take advantage of the last of the thermals and gain height to fly to their roosts.

One of the regular Jays near the bridge was getting quite annoyed. Not only was I delaying its customary peanut by taking pictures, but I had also been changing the battery in the camera.

A Goldcrest in the leaf yard found a small larva of a yew twig.

There was a group of Chaffinches in a tree near the Round Pond.

The Robin near the Lido restaurant was in its favourite place on the olive tree.

Just across the path, a Honeybee browsed in the yellow flowers of a berberis (or maybe a mahonia, the names seem to be a bit vague).

A patch of Honey Fungus in the Dell bodes ill for the many ornamental trees planted there. But once it's arrived there's not much you can do about it.


  1. Yep, it's clearly saying "hurry up already, human servant".

    I too think that Crow was playing with the gull. It's like when you get your little brother or sister to chase you knowing he or she can't catch you.

    It's astonishing how she manages to make so many mute swans toe the line. It's good that they are not crows and won't think of ganging up on her.

    1. Crows actually enjoy being chased by dogs. They fly low but just out of reach, driving the dog mad with frustration.

  2. Jays and crows are so different. I feed many crows and sometimes they will not even take any peanuts from me. They just want to watch me. On the other hand, I have never seen a jay deny a peanut. They seem to have one track minds.

    1. The more I associate with crows, the more I appreciate their intelligence and guile and malicious sense of humour.