Thursday 11 August 2022

Pigeon afloat

A Feral Pigeon floated in the water at Peter Pan. They can take off from water, and this one did shortly afterwards.

Wood Pigeons are too large to take off from water, and when they fall off a branch into the lake they have to paddle themselves ashore awkwardly with their wings. I've seen this happen but haven't yet got a photograph.

A Starling ate a blackberry beside the Long Water.

Starlings at the Lido restaurant bickered over a hamburger bun.

The hawthorn tree in which this Long-Tailed Tit was hunting had webs from the Hawthorn Moth on it a few weeks ago. Perhaps it's the presence of this moth that makes hawthorns so attractive to Long-Tailed Tits, which spend a lot of time in them.

Great Tits in the Flower Walk waited in the shade for a chance to take a pine nut.

This Robin was looking very tatty after breeding ...

... but this one was immaculate. It may be one of this year's young from an early brood which has already grown fully adult plumage.

The all-black Jackdaw was at the leaf yard, panting in the heat. It would get hotter than a normal bird with a grey head.

It took two visits to the Round Pond to find any Little Owls. Here are the male ...

... and one of the young ones in different horse chestnut trees.

At least one Peregrine has been visible on the tower every day since they returned last month. You can only get a reasonable picture if they stand on the very edge of the ledge. Today the female was moving around farther back, probably eating a pigeon but impossible to photograph.

For the second day running I heard Hobbies calling north of Kensington Gardens. They have nested outside the park this year, but fly over occasionally to catch dragonflies and Swifts at the Round Pond.

The Mute Swan family from the gravel strip in the Long Water is slowly claiming territory farther and farther down the Serpentine, apparently unopposed. They had got as far as the small willow below the Triangle car park. A teenage cygnet snapped irritably at a Coot.

A swan at the Serpentine outflow was also feeling aggressive.

The six Mallard ducklings on the Serpentine dived hastily to avoid a Black-Headed Gull. I'm told that this brood originated on the Round Pond, and their mother took them on a overland trek to the Long Water, almost 600 yards, to get them to a less exposed place.

Red-Crested and Common Pochards sheltered under the trees fringing the Long Water.

A female Common Pochard came over to the Vista.

A Common Blue butterfly perched on a stachys leaf in the Rose Garden.

A Buff-Tailed Bumblebee visited a scarlet salvia flower in the Flower Walk.


  1. Disappointing that the mother duck didn't react to the gull, though the duckling's quick reaction is impressive. Jim

    1. I think that the small Black-Headed Gulls are not a serious threat to ducklings, and the mother knew it. I have seen female Mallards attack swooping Herring Gulls with utter fury.