Saturday 31 July 2021

Today the female Little Owl was hard to see in a birch tree.

She started calling to her mate, who was several hundred yards away, and you can just hear him answering her.

There was a heavy shower in the early afternoon, which the Carrion Crow family at the Italian Garden endured stoically.

When it stopped, a family of Long-Tailed Tits came out of shelter and flew around near the West Carriage Drive.

Neil sent a pleasing picture of a young Robin in the same place.

During the heaviest rain, one of the young Lesser Black-Backed Gulls played with a reed at the Lido.

Another was pestering a parent ...

... which was annoyed and flew away.

The pigeon-eating gull was in his usual place eyeing a couple of Feral Pigeons, but they were wary of him and stayed out of reach.

The Great Crested Grebe chick from the west end of the island was certainly finding something to eat, maybe Daphnia water fleas. But when its parent surfaced, it rushed over hoping to be given a fish.

Grebe chicks are too light to keep their feet submerged when travelling fast, and make quite a splash.

The grebe whose mate died was still hanging around the platform of Bluebird Boats, looking listless and miserable. All the other adult grebes on the lake are in pairs, so he will have to fly to the river to find a new mate.

The Moorhens at the Serpentine outflow are nesting inside the weir again. One brought a bit of reed.

This Mute cygnet has been alone on the Serpentine for some time, and we have no idea how it got separated from its parents. Today it came under the bridge on to the Long Water and tried to join the dominant swan's four cygnets, which were being fed at the Vista. Surprisingly, their mother didn't mind, and neither did their very aggressive father who arrived shortly afterwards. But one of the resident cygnets didn't want to share, and chased the newcomer away. It kept coming back. Maybe it will manage to get adopted.

There was also a female Mandarin at the Vista, the first I've seen in a while.


  1. Your videos have never been accessible from your emails. There is nothing after the text. I use Gmail.

    1. Sorry, but FeedBurner can hardly send you videos. You wouldn't like the size of the message with these attached. A sensible alternative is to put the address of the blog
      into the bookmarks of your browser, and click on it every evening to see the latest post.

  2. A rather beautiful image of the Moorhen swimming.
    Is there a pair of Black Backed Gulls around, do you know (not Lesser)? I was standing on the bridge yesterday, and there were 2 sitting on the posts below that looked too big to be merely LBB.

    1. Great Black-Backed Gulls do turn up here occasionally. They are unmistakably huge and have heavy bills and pinkish-grey (not yellow) legs and feet.

    2. They look like bouncers, to me. Absent-minded, empty-eyed, ginormous, and absolutely brutal.

      Is there an speficic name in English for the Little Owl's call? In Spanish the folk verb for their call is "mayar", "to say meow".

    3. No, there isn't, but there should be. Only the females say 'meow'. The male call is a level high-pitched hoot that can't be rendered in writing, even in Korean.