Wednesday 28 December 2022

Dark and drizzly

It was a dark day of intermittent drizzle. A Carrion Crow ate an apple that someone had put on the railings for the Rose-Ringed Parakeets, which were mostly staying in cover because their feathers aren't waterproof.

The Redwings were in the dense trees on the north side of the allotment.

The male Chaffinch ...

... his mate ...

... and a Great Tit came out on the corkscrew hazel in the Flower Walk.

A Great Tit searched for insects in fallen leaves near the bridge.

The Little Owl at the Round Pond was staying dry in his hole.

A Great Spotted Woodpecker called near the Speke obelisk. A pair have a hole here in a half-dead birch tree. This is the female.

A Pied Wagtail sprinted up the edge of the Serpentine.

There were no crowds feeding the Feral Pigeons at the Dell restaurant to give the Lesser Black-Backed Gull an easy catch, so he reverted to his usual tactic of standing quietly on the edge waiting for a pigeon to forget he was there.

The Grey Herons' nest on the island has been active every day since it was started, so there's a good chance that the pair are serious about nesting. We had a successful early nest last winter.

A heron stood on a planter in the Italian Garden. I wonder whether there are enough medium-sized fish here to make fishing worthwhile. The Cormorants have done their usual thorough job and left.

The Little Grebe was lurking in another planter. It certainly wouldn't go anywhere near a heron.

It came out and did a bit of diving for whatever it is that it's finding to eat here. It has been here for a fortnight, so it must be doing well enough.

The Black Swan on the Round Pond has been seen with a Mute teenager recently.


  1. OhmyGod, hybrid babies! (I know, I know, I'm hyperventilating and getting way ahead of myself).
    It's amazing that you are able to find a Little Grebe lurking among the vegetation. Sometimes I think you must have a psychic connection to them!
    That corkscrew hazel is the official red carpet for small birds.

    1. Yes, you are getting a bit ahead. She's only in her first year. It would be another two years before she could breed. Also, Black x Mute hybrids are not pretty, large and dull grey, though I suppose they are interesting.

      I can only find that Little Grebe because I have learnt some of its habits, and it's in a very small space, smaller than a tennis court. They are brilliant at lurking.

  2. It was a thoroughly miserable day yesterday. Apart from some shopping I spent the day at home!

    We take Carrion Crows for granted but that is a fine shot with the apple.

    Do we think there might be a romance between the Black & immature Mute Swan or just a casual friendship?

    1. I think the Black Swan, which is an adult male, thinks it's a romance, and the teenage Mute Swan is too young to know what she's doing. We have seen the Black Swans that visit the park form attachments in this way.

  3. Interesting, Ralph. We'll see what happens-probably not a lot!