Sunday 7 February 2021

It snowed all day, but the temperature was just above freezing and the ground was saturated by last night's rain, so the snow didn't lie.

There were Long-Tailed Tits in the Dell as usual ...

... keeping themselves warm by stoking up with mealworms from the feeder.

A Great Tit came out of a yew tree near the bridge to ask for food.

A few Starlings were hopefully hanging around the Lido restaurant, but there were few humans to provide them with snacks ...

... so most of them were in Kensington Gardens searching for worms in the flooded grass.

A Goldcrest appeared unexpectedly beside the Long Water. Freezing weather takes a terrible toll on these tiny insect-eating birds, but some always pull through, and they breed prodigiously.

The Grey Heron was still doggedly sitting in the nest at the west end of the island ...

... and the nest at the other end was still being built up ...

... but the higher nests had been abandoned in the freezing wind. A heron sheltered in a reed bed on the Long Water.

The two pairs of Egyptian Geese near the Henry Moore sculpture continued their territorial dispute.

A Greylag on the Long Water ate a nasty-looking bunch of dead weeds, but they must know what they're doing.

The Red-Crested Pochard and his Mallard mate were also here, but the Mallard drake with the pale front had been replaced by a normal coloured one, possibly the original third member of the trio.

There was a Mute Swan in the Italian Garden.

Paul saw it trying to get out through the barrier around the marble fountain -- which, along with the unused scaffolding for fountain repairs that haven't been carried out, has been cluttering up the place pointlessly for months. It couldn't squeeze through the gaps in the barrier. We could have enlarged a gap, but the lower basin of the fountain now has no water in it (it must be the only thing in the park that isn't full of water at the moment) and we thought that the swan would hurt itself if it jumped down, so we did nothing. Swans do seem to be able to get out somehow, maybe by going on to the grass and managing to take off with a desperate waddling run and furious flapping.

This pair of swans on the Serpentine try every year to make a nest beside one of the boathouses, but have never succeeded. This year they seem to have started their futile effort early.

The Black Swan was still on the Round Pond, investigating a plastic bag to see if there were any snails on it.


  1. Gosh, it does look very cold. Thank God the small birds have a guardian angel looking out for them.

    I am sure the Swan will get out somehow or other. They are unstoppable machines.

    1. It looks as if the weather is going to be grandly horrible for the whole of this week. I am wrapping myself up like an Egyptian mummy and using electric hand warmers inside my gloves. Roll on spring.

  2. Let's hope that Goldcrest can survive-certainly going to be a tough week for our wildlife. Not looking forward to it one little bit!

    1. Nor I. But at least I don't have to live in a tree,