Saturday 26 March 2022

Nesting Jackdaws

The Tawny Owl looked down calmly from his oak tree.

I was asked whether the hole was large enough for him to get inside. Yes, it is, because he did so at the end of the morning. The hole is next to a thick horizontal branch which is probably hollow and may have enough room for a nest in it.

Two pairs of Jackdaws went in and out of holes in an old sweet chestnut tree near the leaf yard. It looks as if there are at least three nests here, the third one in an oak.

Starlings ate an apple that someone had put out for the Rose-Ringed Parakeets. They seemed rather nervous of the apple, as if it might bite back.

One of the familiar Coal Tit pair near the Albert Memorial perched on a Berberis bush.

There was another Coal Tit in the catalpa trees near the Italian Garden.

A pair of Wood Pigeons preened each other on a branch.

Two Grey Herons fought on the newly repaired gravel bank in the Long Water. The year-old heron on the left started the fight. No doubt it's trying to work its way up the pecking order.

The Coots at Peter Pan cooperated to drag a large stick on to their nest.

The dominant male Mute Swan on the Long Water sat proudly on the nesting island which has just been rebuilt for him and his mate.

There are few suitable sites for swans, so they are driven to nest in unsuitable places. This one is right next to the busy terrace of the Lido restaurant, separated by low railings which a fox could leap in an instant.

It would not actually be kind to make more nesting places for the swans. The Serpentine is already overcrowded with over 120 of them, and the less they breed the better.

I was wrong about the Egyptian Geese in the Dell. They are not the pair whose male was on the Parade Ground, because he was back there today waiting for his mate.

The pair in the Dell were together beside the stream.

The Egyptians at the Vista were down to five goslings this morning.

Mark Williams sent a picture of a new brood in St James's Park which includes a blond gosling. I'm not sure how this trait is inherited but think it may be sex-lined, as most pale Egyptians seem to be female.

The sunshine brought out one of the five terrapins on to the fallen horse chestnut tree in the Long Water. It's a Red-Eared Slider.

A Comma butterfly settled on a twig near Temple Gate.

The bushes at the back of the Lido were busy with bees, including a Hairy-Footed Flower Bee on currant blossom ...

... and a Buff-Tailed Bumblebee on a Grevillea bush.

Grevillea flowers contain abundant sweet nectar, which in their native Australia is a treat for Aborigines. But the Wikipedia article from which I got this information warned that cultivated Grevillea should not be sampled, as some kinds contain cyanide.


  1. Wow, I am gone for a day, and come back to two pictures of a Tawnie! I couldn't hope for a better "welcome back".

    1. The owl seems very settled in that tree. We are all hoping he has a mate somewhere, but no one can say yes or no to that at present.

  2. Wow that comma looks fabulous :) Mark

  3. Alright, time to go back to Hyde Park and look for the Tawny ­čść