Saturday, 2 January 2021

A male Wood Pigeon bowed to a potential mate, a courtship ritual. She wasn't interested, and further approaches led to a fight.

A pair of Blue Tits chased each other through a tree ...

... and a Long-Tailed Tit looked out between the twigs. Having a very long tail doesn't seem to restrict them from flitting around neatly in tight spaces.

A Wren looked for insects in the yew tree in the leaf yard.

A Rose-Ringed Parakeet inspected a lifebelt box as a possible winter shelter.

Someone had put down some parsley in an attempt to feed the birds. Feral Pigeons gave it a brief look and left it alone.

A Grey Heron looked down into the top nest, where its mate was busy rearranging twigs. It probably makes sense for only one heron to work on the nest at the time. They are big birds and would get in each other's way.

The third nest from the top was also occupied ...

... and another heron stared at the island from a plane tree on the shore.

Although now seven nests have had herons in them, I think there are only three pairs. Some of them haven't decided which nest to use. They're always interested in repairing existing nests rather than using the baskets kindly provided for them.

The Black Swan was still on the Serpentine, cruising around by herself and ignoring the Mute Swans.

The Goldeneye was being awkward to photograph, crossing the lake to the far side whenever I tried to find him.

More Red-Crested Pochards have arrived on the Long Water, four drakes and a female. It seems to be the gang of five that we have had here in several previous years.

It's not just Shovellers that feed at the air bubbler in the Long Water. Black-Headed Gulls are also finding food here. I think it's probably Daphnia water fleas, which are large enough to see as they come up.

The fox was comfortably curled up in the tree across the water from Peter Pan.

This curious orange sticky thing was growing on a tree below the Triangle car park. I sent a picture to our fungus expert Mario, who tells me that it's not a fungus but a slime mould.


  1. May I say that Mario is a living encyclopedia? The breadth of his knowledge astounds me.

    I wonder how the Long Tailed Tits manage to keep such a tidy long tail. Lots of preening and upkeeping, I guess.

    Female House Sparrows tend to have a similar belligerent reaction when a hapless suitor doesn't get the message.

    1. Long-Tailed Tits' tails do get a bit tatty after nesting. But they soon moult and regrow the feathers.

      I do miss our Sparrows. Maybe Johnson's economic disaster will produce cleaner air that allows them to return.

  2. Fun footage of the Wood Pigeons- have to feel sorry for that male who was trying hard to impress!

    Lovely to see the Red Crested Pochards back.

    It almost felt warm yesterday afternoon when the sun came out.

    1. The Kinbgfisher seems to be here still. Des saw it yesterday. I didn't, nor today despite looking carefully.

  3. How do you tell the sex of the other Woodpigeon? That 'crowing' coo I take to mean "f- off", it always seems to precede an attack.

    I found the Goldeneye late on Saturday not far from the Dell Restaurant. Also saw the White-fronted Goose last month, on a working day. The birds on the Serpentine seemed much hungrier when I fed them then, both Greylag and Canada Geese kept grabbing at my trousers and a swan was about to join in. Jim

    1. If a male Wood Pigeon bows to another, I assume that he assumes the other is female. But that's all I know about Wood Pigeon rituals, not enough to be sure.