Thursday 26 August 2021

Robins have started singing again after their summer break. They will carry on for the rest of the year, the only songbird that sings regularly in autumn and winter.

The male Little Owl was back in the nest tree.

Carrion Crows are now often stealing apples stuck on the spiked railings by people trying to feed the Rose-Ringed Parakeets. This crow had taken it several hundred yard away to eat it in peace.

A Wood Pigeon looked down from a holly tree where it was eating unripe berries.

Andrew Skeet found and photographed the female Kestrel.

She caught a beetle and carried it off.

The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull was relaxing after a heavy meal.

He didn't bother to chase away the young Herring Gull that was eating his leftovers.

The Great Crested Grebes on the Long Water have now started carrying their chicks around, though they still remain near the safety of the bushes on the far side of the lake. I could only get a picture with one chick showing.

One of the chicks from the Serpentine island was preening.

Moorhens nest every year in the collapsed willow tree near the bridge, though their nest site can't be seen from any angle. They came down the tree to look for insects in the disused Great Crested Grebes' nest.

The Moorhens in the Dell have some new chicks. Only one could be seen, but the way their mother is standing suggests that she is sheltering more.

Two teenage Moorhens are now often seen on the platform at Bluebird Boats. I don't know where they come from. They are too old to be from the nest in the cardboard box, where all chicks were lost after they came down into the water.

There were 17 Red-Crested Pochards on the Long Water this morning, an unusually high number. There is a big flock of them in St James's Park and some of them come over to visit occasionally. As usual almost all of them are drakes, now in eclipse and with the same plumage as females but their red bills and eyes give them away. There is a female at the end of this video, with brown eyes and a dark bill with a slight reddish tinge along the edges.

The terrapins on the Long Water are surprisingly good climbers.

A Common Carder bee browsed in a clump of Verbena bonariensis in the Dell.


  1. Yes I've noticed the Robins singing again this last week or so as well as Wrens. I find these sometimes sing in the winter too but not as much as the Robins.

    Lovely shot of the Moorhen brooding her young. If these were rare birds people would get so excited by them as they are very attractive looking birds. Because they're so common they get taken for granted.

    1. A lot of very common British birds would be considered wildly exciting if they were only found in, say, Guatemala. People would go into rhapsodies about the gorgeous colours of the Blue Tit or the tiny size of the Goldcrest.

    2. To me, Swans are the pinnacle of exoticism! We don't get wild swans here, so I would be willing to trade a few Cinereous Vultures for an equal number of Mute and Whooper Swans!

    3. I wish we could do the swap. Some huge vultures would be an ornament to the park. Our much missed Wildlife Officer Hugh Smith was wondering whether he could reintroduce Goshawks, but we agreed that owners of lapdogs would make a fuss about their pets being snatched up and devoured.

  2. Goshawks would be an interesting addition to the park's avifauna! They breed in one or two of the German cities. Could have an interesting effect on the pigeons, gulls & corvids in the park!

    1. When the escaped Harris Hawk spent some time in St James's Park, as far as I know it contented itself with pigeons. Not too hard to catch, and a substantial meal.