Thursday 17 June 2021

A Wren beside the Long Water stared suspiciously from a twig.

A young Starling, still in plain juvenile brown, perched on the railings at the Lido restaurant.

The Starlings' former nests in the plane trees by the boathouses have been stolen by Rose-Ringed Parakeets, but a family of Great Tits have managed to hang on here because their hole is too small for the invaders. This is one of the fledglings.

A Herring Gull and a Lesser Black-Backed Gull enjoyed a bathe in the flowing water of the Diana memorial fountain.

A young Grey Heron from the second nest on the island balanced precariously on a twig and flew away. The two young birds can now fly as well as adults, though they are still spending some time in the nest.

The other young heron perched on the electric boat, looking as gormless as only young herons can.

The Great Crested Grebe chick on the Long Water stretched its wings. Grebes are hatched with quite strong wings, which they use as front legs for crawling on to a parent's back.

Moorhen chicks, on the other hand, arrive with tiny featherless wings that are no use at all for a long time.

A pair of Moorhens tried to nest on the platform at Bluebird Boats, and have been given a cardboard box as a safe place. The railings protect the nest from marauding foxes.

The female Mute Swan at the boathouse left her two eggs while she went off to feed, and the male guarded the nest. I'm not at all sure that these eggs are going to hatch.

Young Egyptian Geese on the Serpentine rushed around and dived, just for fun.

One of the Bar-Headed x Greylag hybrid geese from St James's Park has come to the Serpentine to moult in a safe place.

So have several Red-Crested Pochards. This one resting beside the Serpentine has a faded head but has not yet gone into eclipse. When it does, it will look just like a female except for its red eyes and bill.

A Mandarin drake on the Long Water is well into eclipse, and looking sadly tatty.

The Mallard near the bridge has managed to keep her one duckling.

There is a large herd of wooden elephants in Green Park, photographed here by Martin Sacks. They are being moved around various sites in London to publicise elephant conservation, and it must be quite a job shifting them. They are Indian elephants, while the herd formerly at Marble Arch were African.


  1. Just noticed: the first 2 photos and captions are wrong way round.

    1. Thank you. And that wasn't even me. Blogger is very vague about where is pictures go, and they often slide around. Fixed now, hope it stays that way.

  2. Enchanted by the boat people, again. Lovely cardboard box nest-cover.

  3. The Bluebird Boat people are the best. They restore faith in goodness and kindness.

    Love seeing the birds playing and frolicking. They look truly happy. No wonder Peter Pan chose to escape to Kensington Gardens.

    1. Mateusz saw a problem with the Moorhen nest. It's on the platform, and when the chicks take to the water there's no way for them to get up again. We discussed this. I think that the instinctive climbing ability of even the youngest Moorhens would allow them to get up even the most modest of ramps in a way that Coot chicks have shown themselves unable to do. A bit of wood in a quiet corner of the platform would do the trick, as long as the parents can discover it, which they probably would if a bit of food was left there. We shall have to see.