Saturday, 9 January 2021

The Kingfisher is still here. Someone saw it yesterday. I was photographing a Cormorant on the fallen horse chestnut in the Long Water ...

... when there was a flash of blue, and it sped towards the Italian Garden. It took three visits to find it in a bramble patch on the west side of the water.

A Long-Tailed Tit paused on a twig before crossing the waterfront at the Vista.

The very shy Wren at the back of the Lido came out on a sweetgum twig for a few seconds.

One of the Peregrines was on the tower, mostly out of sight at the back of the ledge but occasionally looking over the front with a beakful of its latest kill.

A Common Gull, a young Herring Gull and a Black-Headed Gull perched on the buoys at the Lido. A Black-Headed Gull can do this easily, a Common Gull has to be careful not to tip the buoy over, and a Herring Gull has to stand absolutely still to stay upright.

A Lesser Black-Backed Gull stared from a rail at the Lido.

There were two Grey Herons in the top nest on the island. This pair seem to be top in status as well as in altitude.

Another heron stood in a nest on the other side of the island.

A Coot on the Serpentine picked up a twig. Their nesting instinct never ceases.

Some Mute Swans had collected on the bank on the Long Water, near the bridge.

The dominant male herded the intruders back under the bridge and on to the Serpentine.

The Black Swan has gone back to the Round Pond after a territorial dispute on the Long Water. The moment it sees anyone who might have some food, it comes over briskly.

I've been assuming that this swan is female, because it usually follows male Mute Swans. But Jorgen thinks it's male, because it's quite large, and that it's just young and confused.

Joan Chatterley found Blondie the Egyptian Goose in St James's Park with what its presumably her new mate. This is the second time that Joan's found her here.

There was a rabbit under the Henry Moore sculpture. They have been almost wiped out by foxes and myxomatosis, but this one seemed healthy.

On a freezing January day it was a surprise to see a cloud of midges dancing in the sunlight on the edge of the Long Water.


  1. Good meeting you today, and thanks for your updates. Nice shot of the kingfisher. Whereabouts is the bramble? Towards the Italian Gardens? Perhaps it perches there often. I’ll have to try again tomorrow and track it down.

    1. That bramble patch is near the north end of the Long Water, on the west side. But the Kingfisher moves constantly round the lake and may be anywhere. You have to keep looking from both sides, and be lucky.

  2. Excellent picture of the Kingfisher. Isn't it a miracle that such a vivid shade of turquoise exists in a living creature?

    I am cheering for Blondie and the prospect of having more Blondie goslings to oohh and awwwww over.

    Aren't there large female Black Swans? I wonder who gave it its first taste of bread.

    1. It would be a sound move by Blondie to breed in St James's Park, where there are fewer Herring Gulls than the great mob on the Serpentine.

      A quick search hasn't put up any information about the relative sizes of male and female Black Swans. But I'm sure that, as with Mute Swans, there is considerable overlap.