Saturday 13 February 2021

A bitterly cold night froze the Long Water again in spite of the keen wind. A Coot ...

... a Moorhen...

... and a Herring Gull explored the ice.

The air bubblers had made holes in the ice where Black-Headed Gulls were feeding.

The Serpentine had been kept from freezing by the waves except in a few parts sheltered from the wind, but thick icicles hung from the chains at the bridge.

In spite of the this some Great Crested Grebes, which had fled to the river when the first frost set in, had returned, sensing the end of the cold weather. They shrug off cold but are afraid of being trapped by ice, because their very long takeoff run would prevent them from flying out.

The Black Swan was in a bad mood, and chased a large male Mute Swan across the Serpentine,

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull had struck again, and a young Lesser Black-Back was finishing off the remains of his victim.

A pair of Grey Herons building a nest at the east end of the island were momentarily distracted by another flying past, and had a little display before getting back to work.

The female Peregrine was on the tower.

There were two Redwings in a tree on Buck Hill.

At the foot of the hill a Robin perched on a rope cordoning off a patch of the dreaded Japanese Knotweed.

The Long-Tailed Tits at the feeder in the Dell ...

... were joined by a Coal Tit.

The flood in the Meadow had first frozen over and then drained so that the ice sheet collapsed. The uneven rink provided amusement on a busy weekend afternoon.

Joan Chatterley was in St James's Park, where she photographed Blondie stepping out with her new mate.


  1. I trust in the wisdom of Grebes. If they are returning, the Arctic cold will surely be ending soon. It can't end soon enough though.

    1. They really do seem to be better at forecasting the next few days than the Met Office can manage. Word from the latter is that the cold will slowly let up over Sunday, and that Monday will be fairly mild. I hope so, as it's the day of my monthly bird count and I simply can't do that with frozen fingers.