Monday, 17 May 2021

The Mute Swans on the Long Water were out with their five cygnets when one of them was attacked by a Coot and knocked endways. The cygnet was all right, and the parents chased the Coot away.

The swans in the nest at the east end of the Lido have four cygnets, and the last two eggs haven't hatched. When I was there the female swan was keeping her young under her wings and I couldn't get a picture.

The Greylag Goose with two goslings was keeping them in shelter on her back.

Virginia caught the Mandarins on the Serpentine mating.

She saw five Coot chicks in the nest on the post at Peter Pan. I couldn't get a picture of all of them, and this is the best I could manage.

One of the two young Grey Herons in the second nest on the island was flapping around in the trees.

A young Pied Wagtail looked for insects among the goose droppings on the Diana memorial fountain. Its parents are still feeding it occasionally ...

... and one of them was on the shore with a beakful of insects.

The young Grey Wagtails at the Lido are now fully grown and catching insects quite efficiently.

Starlings searched for insects in the swans' nest at the west end of the Lido restaurant terrace. The swan was not pleased.

A Starling sang on the roof of the shelter on Buck Hill, where several of them are nesting.

One was on the ground collecting insects for its nestlings.

Clive Murgatroyd got a picture of the Cetti's Warbler in front of the new pond dipping platform on the Long Water.

Another fine shot by Virginia: a Reed Warbler collecting spider's webs for its nest in the Diana reed bed.

A male Blue Tit sang on a lamp post near the Hyde Park bandstand. I don't think a pair are nesting here yet.

A Jay waited to be fed in a hawthorn near the Italian Garden.

Pictures from farther afield: Tom got a good shot of a Little Owl at Wanstead Flats ...

... and video of a Magpie confronting a Short-Eared Owl at Rainham Marshes.

Joan Chatterley reports that the Great Crested Grebes in Battersea Park have bred much sooner than ours.


  1. Does the offensive Coot have no thought of the consequences of its actions?

    So Mandarins even mate affectionately, or is the still misleading?

    Cetti's in showing well shocker. Jim.

    1. I don't think Coots have any understanding at all of the consequences of their actions. I've seen them attack adult Mute Swans too. If a hippopotamus swam into their territory they'd go for it.

    2. I'd pay good money to see that- Coots' motto ought to be "Possunt, quia posse videntur"

    3. I hope to be able to film this some day. It's not unusual.

  2. That Coot has a death wish, to assault a cygnet so in front of its parents.

    The Starlings's courage is commendable, even if their lack of common sense isn't.

    1. Starlings can be bold because they can fly away so fast. What we see here looks foolhardy, but it's less so than the idiotic behaviour of the Coot.

  3. Hello Ralph. I met you in the park today. Glad you got good footage of the pied wagtails, in spite of me talking over your filming, oops. Thank you for your brilliant blog. Best wishes, Maisie

    1. Good to meet you too, and thank you for your kind words about the blog.