Monday, 22 March 2021

The Egyptian Geese near the bridge still have six goslings, and the border of the shrubbery provides a selection of tasty plants. A close-up shows one of the three blond goslings preening.

The seven goslings at the Henry Moore sculpture are still  in good order ...

... and so are the two at the Lido.

The Mute Swans that nested in the corner of a flower bed east of the Lido last year, and successfully raised two cygnets in spite of the exposed position, are starting a nest in the same place.

A pair of Gadwalls cruised by. For a change here is the female, smaller and neater than a Mallard.

A male Pied Wagtail posed on a twig on the shore ...

... and another preened on the deserted terrace of the Dell restaurant.

A Long-Tailed Tit brought a sprig of moss to the nest near the Italian Garden.

A Blue Tit in the Rose Garden had to sing at the top of its voice to make itself heard over construction noise across the road in Knightsbridge.

A Starling chattered in a tree at the Vista.

A Wood Pigeon ate young leaves.

There was a big shoal of carp at the north end of the Long Water, where they assemble to spawn.

Mario, our fungus expert, drew my attention to a Cedar Cup fungus under the cedar at the back of the Albert Memorial.

Meanwhile he was off to Cannizaro Park in Wimbledon to see a Purple Toothwort (Lathraea clandestina), a strange parasitic plant which has no chlorophyll in its leaves and can't photosynthesise. It lives on the roots of trees and shrubs and draws all its nourishment from them. His photograph shows it still in bud. In a few days it will have orchid-like purple flowers.


  1. Very pleased to report a whole little flock of sparrows, right by the Bullring, behind the Southbank. Only saw fleeting glimpses, but could hear them alright.

    1. Yes, they come nearer the river on the south bank. There's a little colony in Lambeth, I forget where.

  2. What a strange-looking plant. It looks like an alien life form.

    Look at those teeny tiny wings on the little Egyptian. How I hope some will make it.

    1. So do we all. The parents at the Henry Moore sculpture seem much more attentive than in the past. I'm wondering if it's a different pair this year.

  3. Many years since I saw Purple Toothwort- an attractive non-native that's naturalised in a few places.

    1. It's a plant that has forgotten how to be a plant.