Thursday 25 February 2021

 A Dunnock sang beside the Long Water. Usually they are shy birds, and it's most unusual to be able to get so close to one.

There were several Greenfinches a few yards away.

This is the pair of Long-Tailed Tits in the Rose Garden that are starting a nest in the euonymus bush you can see at the end of this clip. The leaves are too dense for the nest to be seen, but there are plenty of views of them flying around. The bird in the climbing rose was looking for cobwebs.

A pair of Jackdaws were making a racket around a hole in a plane tree in the Dell, where evidently they are planning to nest.

It's unusual to see a Carrion Crow with a ring. I reported the number to the BTO, just to see who is bothering to ring crows.

Both the Peregrines were on the tower. They have been here on most days recently, rather than their other daytime place on the Metropole Hilton hotel.

The Grey Herons' nest with the chick in it is now surrounded by blossom. I didn't get a sight of the chick.

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-backed Gull is looking smarter than ever. His legs are now orange rather than yellow, the most intense colour I've ever seen on one of the species.

A young Herring Gull was poking busily into the space between plastic buoys at the Lido. It may have been trying to unpick the rope.

As soon as the Coots leave the nest on the post at Peter Pan, one or another Black-Headed Gull swims over and starts probing it for insects.

The pair of Great Crested Grebes were still hanging around the Coot nest under the willow by the bridge.

A pair of Mute Swans started to build a nest on the Serpentine island, pulling twigs and bits of debris into a rough heap.

The male Mute Swan that is being pursued by the Black Swan seemed to be on quite civil terms with it today -- easier than having to keep swimming away with this relentless creature following.

The repaired swan island in the Long Water had Canada Geese on it ...

... then a variety of birds -- everything except the swans, which so far are showing no interest in it at all.


  1. Thanks for your reply to my last post, Ralph. I tried again today with better results:

    1402. started obvs at the northern end of the Parade Ground. Nothing on HPB.

    1430. bird in the air to the north, a little beyond the park boundary. Went eastwards past the former Odeon site, then south across the Parade Ground and circled over the SE corner of the park. Headed westwards and landed up on HPB right-hand ledge 1436.

    1442. disappeared. Scanned around to the east and north but to no avail until...

    1445. peregrine low over the rooftops to the NW, heading southwards with a pigeon. As it (she, I was pretty sure) flew over the wooded area surrounding the Old Police House a herring gull began harrassing her, getting very close, but she appeared to keep hold of the kill. Landed up on HPB right-hand ledge.

    Headed towards HPB to get a closer look.

    1451. Second bird now on the RH ledge, probably the tiercel. The first bird visibly feeding, further back in the ledge. Her back looks to have somewhat of a dark brown shade to it whereas the other bird, on the edge of the ledge with its back to me, definitely looks greyer.

    1459. Tiercel moved over to the kill - thought a spat would ensue, but nothing happened. He moved back to the edge of the ledge, facing outwards.

    1510. finished up. Both birds still on the ledge when I made my last check near the NE shelter at 1518.

    1. Thanks. Yes, today's video shows the female going to the back of the ledge, evidently to eat a bit more of the pigeon.

  2. Oddly enough, to me Dunnock song means winter. There is an enormous influx of migrant Dunnocks from central Europe in winter and that is when I hear them more often.

    It's a miracle that the Long Tailed Tit doesn't get pricked jumping all over those thorns.

    Pigeon Killer is looking splendid.

    1. Thorns seem to mean nothing to birds. A couple of months ago I saw a Great Tit hopping around in a monkeypuzzle, who surface is nothing but needle-sharp spikes.

  3. I wonder if its clearly above-standard intelligence is also due to its diet, BTW.

  4. The Carrion Crow was ringed as a 1st calendar year bird in The Regent's Park on 23rd October 2018. This is the first carrion Crow that I have successfully managed to catch in a mist-net - most corvids are far too clever to go near such things or can get out of the nets relatively easily due to their size. It does show that Crows in the Parks move between the different Parks, and presumably around London.

    1. Thanks for the information. It coincided with a reply from Euring after I reported the number, so this sighting has been logged. It was the first time the crow had been reported after you ringed her.