Thursday 19 August 2021

The male Little Owl, not seen for a while, turned up this morning. Here he is looking down from the nest tree ...

... and, in a picture by Tom, after he had flown into another sweet chestnut.

A Wood Pigeon flapped around clumsily in an elder tree to reach the berries.

The young Carrion Crows' voices are changing and they are beginning to sound more like adults. They are still begging, though their parents have been taking no notice for some time. But they do get the chance to snatch their parents' food, and are not punished.

The Chaffinch family were flitting around in their usual tree near the bridge. This is an adult female.

One of the young Grey Herons was right out of the nest and climbing around in  a treetop. This is the first clear view I've had of it.

A young Lesser Black-Backed Gull touched down on the Serpentine Road after evading another gull that was trying to snatch its crayfish.

The Great Crested Grebes with two chicks had a quiet moment at the west end of the island.

A gigantic hybrid goose has appeared on the Serpentine. It was with Canadas, so clearly its mother was one, and it looks as if its father was a farmyard goose, genetically a Greylag but bred for size.

If you feed the Mute Swans from a boat you get a hungry escort.

Two of the terrapins climbed up a branch opposite Peter Pan. They are getting more adventurous, and being seen in new places.

A pair of Common Darter dragonflies mated on a fallen tree.

Duncan Campbell got a good portrait of a male on a birch tree.

He also found the caterpillar of a Buff-Tip Moth.

A Speckled Wood butterfly perched on a bramble.

Neil discovered what, after some searching, he thought was a Lesser Stag Beetle. It has curious bars over its eyes to protect them from damage, like the guard on the lights of a Land-Rover. Update: Conehead 54 comments: 'The beetle isn't a Lesser Stag Beetle but I'm afraid I don't know what it is --perhaps one of the carabids.'

Further update: Neil is sure that it's a female Lesser Stag Beetle, and sent a picture from a different angle to prove his point.

Even further: on the basis of this picture Conehead 54 agrees that it is a Lesser Stag Beetle. Probably I should have chosen a flatter shot from those originally sent by Neil, but the first picture was the prettiest.

A Common Carder bee worked its way over a patch of big blue Agapanthus flowers in the Dell.


  1. Some lovely insect photos again. I saw plenty of Common Darters yesterday too. The beetle isn't a Lesser Stag Beetle but I'm afraid I don't know what it is-perhaps one of the carabids.

    Pleased you're getting good views of the Little Owls again.

    1. Thanks for the information. I've never seen anything like those eye protectors.

    2. It looks so different in the second photo, so will agree. Sorry for confusion

    3. My fault: Neil sent several pictures and I went for what I considered the prettiest, while a flatter view would have been clearer for identification.

  2. That's a fearsome escort if there ever was one. Like a carrier battle group.

    I am having trouble remembering how many Grebe chicks we have. I think it still is a better year than previous ones?

    1. Five, with more on the way when the nest opposite Peter Pan hatches, which it should imminently.

  3. Hi Ralph:

    Checked up the hobby area this morning - heard/saw them fairly regularly and at one point two females were after what I think was the old male - so although I couldn't be sure exactly how many juveniles there were, they're very much still around.

    Just before I left, some magpies were chasing the hobbies around and I think vice versa. Shame you weren't there with your camera.