Tuesday 1 December 2020

An insistent Carrion Crow tried to grab the pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull's lunch, and forced him to take it out into the water.

Another crow had to make do with a bit of bread, which it dunked in the lake. Even the pappiest of white bread is improved by making it soggy.

A drink to wash the food down.

A preening Starling's lustrous plumage shone brilliantly in the low winter sunlight.

It takes work to keep those feathers looking so fine.

A male Chaffinch ...

... and a female searched for insects under the big holly tree at the corner of the bridge.

A Great Tit came out on a twig before flying down for a pine nut.

This isn't the usual Coal Tit near the bridge. It's one on the east side of the Albert Memorial, here seen on the battered old cedar in a picture by Neil. It's very confident and the first time I saw it, it came straight down to take food from my hand.

A Wren perched for a moment on an oak twig.

A Magpie poked in a flower bed.

A Common Gull stood on a notice beside the Serpentine.

The young Grey Heron on the island has a favourite post. I first photographed it here on 19 July, shortly after it flew in from another park.

The Red-Crested Pochard trio are back together in the Italian Garden after spending a few days apart on the lake. I can imagine the female Mallard with two drakes saying that she wanted some space.

The main reason why the water plants in the baskets at the island do so poorly is that as soon as anything edible grows out of the top of the basket it gets eaten. Only unpalatably woody plants survive, and even then Canada Geese like chewing off the bark.

The sunshine brought out a Buff-Tailed Bumblebee to gather pollen from the fatsia clump near the bridge.


  1. Do I take it you didn't find the White-fronted Goose reported from the park today by Des McKenzie? Part of a sudden flurry of them around London, on the wiki. He also found the Goldeneye. Jim

    1. No, I didn't. Easy to miss among Greylags, many of which have white foreheads. I looked for the Goldeneye and couldn't find it. Des was probably there in the early morning.

  2. Glad to see a Bumblebee again! What do they do in winter in England? In Spain most bees do spend the winter huddled together inside their hives; if they don't have one or have lost it, any crack in an old tree will suffice.

    We tend to forget how staggeringly beautiful Starlings are.

    1. I had to look up the life cycle of the Buff-Tailed Bumblebee in Wikipedia and it's alarmingly complicated, with conflict between queens and workers. Usually the workers don't last the winter, but queens hibernate and emerge in spring to produce new colonies.

  3. What a difference a day made as the song went! Beautiful day yesterday-lovely to see the bee. Mahonia- an essential part of my wildlife garden & a good one to demonstrate that such a garden doesn't have to be natives only, though they are obviously an important component.

    Did you see the White-fronted Goose that was in the park yesterday (along with the Goldeneye still)? Part of quite an influx into London in recent days.

    1. No, I missed the White-Fronted Goose. Didn't even see many Greylags, as they were off grazing elsewhere in the park. Will keep an eye out for it of course.