Saturday 4 September 2021

The trees at the southwest corner of the bridge are now the best place to see small birds. Today there were a Chiffchaff which had just caught an insect ...

... a young Goldcrest, part of a family flitting around in a hawthorn ...

... and a Robin on the dead tree.

There were also Great Tits, Blue Tits, Chaffinches and Greenfinches, which I didn't get a picture of on a dark grey day.

The abundant fruit in the rowan trees on Buck Hill attracted a Blackbird.

Hawthorn fruit grows on the ends of thin twigs, making it hard for a heavy Wood Pigeon to reach it. They often fall out of the tree.

A Magpie washed in the pool at the top of the Dell waterfall.

The young Grey Herons, still obstinately staying in the nest, practised an adult pair's greeting display.

A young Herring Gull played with a stick and a leaf, diving, picking them up and dropping them.

There's not enough meat in a crayfish claw to make it worth a gull's time in breaking it open, but it makes an amusing toy.

The Great Crested Grebes on the Long Water fed one of the chicks ...

... then allowed them out for a swim.

A Moorhen kept a chick warm beside the little stream in the Dell.

Another preened a chick in the Italian Garden, looking for fleas and lice to eat.

A Shoveller and a Pochard sat amicably side by side on the fallen poplar in the Long Water.

No patch of grass is too small for an Egyptian Goose to eat, no puddle too small to drink from.

Tom was at Rye Meads, where he got a good picture of a Muntjac deer.


  1. How proud the Grebe parent looks while opening a path for its two chicks.

    Is preening one's chick usual for other bird species? Mate preening of course, but I'm not so sure about chick preening. That's a very outstanding picture.

    1. Coots preen their chicks in the same way. Or maybe it's not preening, just a bug hunt conducted entirely for food.