Sunday 3 October 2021

The young Grey Wagtail reappeared in the Dell on the edge of the stream.

It had clearly had its fill of the midges flying over the water, as it stayed in the same place for several minutes, preening from time to time.

Several flocks of Long-Tailed Tits were flying around the park. They are particularly fond of hawthorn trees, which must have more insects in them than others.

A Wren perched on a bush in the Rose Garden.

During a heavy shower a Robin sheltered in the Flower Walk.

Chiffchaffs flew around in the holly trees near the bridge, annoyingly never coming into clear view.

A Sparrowhawk shot over the bridge and I got just one mediocre shot before it disappeared over the parapet.

The male Peregrine on the barracks never used to take notice of people on the ground, but I have visited the place so often that he now recognises me and looks down.

A Grey Heron struck a pose beside the island.

The big Coot nest in the middle of the Long Water has been abandoned after two unsuccessful breeding attempts, and has now shrunk to a small remnant picked apart by Lesser Black-Backed Gulls looking for insects in it.

There was mixed company on the tern raft, with two Cormorants, two Egyptian Geese and a Grey Heron. All kinds of birds have used it at some time except terns, which are only occasional visitors anyway.

A pair of Mute Swans washed under a fountain in the Italian Garden.

Since the Black Swan moulted its flight feathers in the summer it has had pure white wings, without the juvenile black tips. But it still has its teenage plumage with grey-tipped feathers, and its eyes haven't yet turned the bright red of an adult.

Several hundred Greylag Geese have turned up and were all over the park from the Round Pond to the Dell. Here are some of 70-odd in the Diana fountain enclosure.

There are also at least 20 Gadwalls on the Long Water, an unusually high number.

Common Wasps browsed on the ivy at the back of the Lido.


  1. Good to see the Grey Wagtail finding plenty of food by the stream.

    The Long-tailed Tit image would look good on a Xmas or similar card.

    1. One thing the park is seldom short of is midges, way through autumn with barely a lull in midwinter before they come out again. We could keep a large colony of Grey Wagtails well fed if the stream were longer -- as of course it was before the Westbourne valley was flooded to make the Serpentine.

      I am always on the lookout for the perfect Christmas card image of a Robin on a holly twig with a snowy background. Easy to get two out of three but the full set is much harder.

    2. I concur. Your pictures make the best Christmas card images.For two Christmas seasons straight I have been putting a different picture of yours everyday as my desktop wallpaper; I just couldn't decide which one I loved best!