Tuesday, 16 March 2021

A new brood of nine Egyptian Goslings has appeared on the grass under the Henry Moore sculpture. However, the parents, who have been here for some years, have never as far as I know been able to keep their offspring alive for long. It doesn't help that the area is much used by Carrion Crows.

A pair of Mute Swans mated on the Serpentine. There is a severe shortage of nest sites on the lake, which is hard for the swans. But the population has been steadily increasing, and if nest sites were provided for all of them we wouldn't be able to move for swans.

An adult swan chased a young one up the Serpentine. It's chucking-out time for last year's cygnets.

The Black Swan was shadowing a Mute Swan at the Vista.

So far the dominant swan on the Long Water has not thrown out the intruders, but he will as soon as the pair start nesting. The gardeners are going to put some cut reeds on the nesting island to encourage them.

Four swans examined the workmen who are making a small pool at the edge of the Long Water for children to do pond dipping. They have put up a coffer dam and are trying to pump out the water behind it, but the pump keeps getting airlocks in its hose.

Herring Gulls and a single Lesser Black-Backed Gull bathed and squabbled mildly in the Diana fountain.

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull menaced some potential victims.

The Grey Heron in the top nest on the island stared down haughtily. This is the largest nest and the first to be occupied this year, but the pair have still not started breeding. Maybe they're right to wait, considering the failure of the first two attempts.

The Redwings were still in the trees beside the Albert Memorial, this time at the far west end near Queen's Gate.

A pair of Stock Doves examined the much claimed hole in the nearby plane tree. It has been nested in by Mandarins and occupied by Jackdaws and Rose-Ringed Parakeets. The persistent doves are likely to win.

This Robin in the Rose Garden now lets me get quite close, in return for a reward of pine nuts after I've finished filming.

A Pied Wagtail in the Diana enclosure was backlit by a brief sunny interval.

A Chaffinch foraged in the woodland at the foot of Buck Hill.

A Blue Tit stared from the corkscrew hazel near the feeder in the Dell ...

... and so did a Long-Tailed Tit from a branch above.


  1. The singing Robin is the perfect thing to see before going to bed in order to have good dreams.

    It'd be a curious thing to have the swans have the run of the park. What would happen if that were so?

    1. There are some stretches of river where swans have lorded it over humans, the best known being the Cam (or is it the Granta?) at Cambridge where the huge and violent swan called Asbo knocked people off punts. He has now been succeeded by Son of Asbo who is worthily carrying on the tradition of his father. (Incidentally, Asbo is an acronym for a judicial measure applied in an attempt to control thugs, AntiSocial Behaviour Order.)

    2. I think it was the Cam. I was there in 2010 when Mr Asbo was at the height of its terror. Never managed to see him in action though, sadly.

    3. I also wish I'd seen him. Standing on the stern of a punt with a pole is inviting disaster at the best of times, and a furious swan makes the moment perfect.

  2. Lovely shot of the Stock Doves- I do have a soft spot for them.

    Your Redwings should be off soon. I saw a fair number still on my patch on Sunday but didn't see any Fieldfares which I had been seeing in previous weeks.

    1. It's been a poor year for Redwings here because of the lack of the hideous funfair which ruins acres of grass and leaves the worms on the bare ground. For the first time in years I haven't seen a single Fieldfare in the park.