Thursday 26 January 2023

Round the lake again

The ice on the Long Water is almost melted, but still just thick enough to bear the weight of Black-Headed Gulls.

A Moorhen, slightly heavier, fell through a thin place.

The dominant Mute Swan pair had taken the opportunity to clear out their rivals, but I arrived too late to see any action and all I saw was the male cruising towards the bridge to make sure none of them was trying to come back.

The Little Grebe was still in the Italian Garden, but sad to say it had been deserted by its Gadwall friends, which had flown right away.

It had a go at associating with some Tufted Ducks but this didn't work out.

It might work if the ducks got the idea. Tufted Ducks are quite sociable, and you often see them tagging along with bigger ducks.

A Cormorant did a quick round of all the Italian Garden pools but didn't find a fish.

Virginia sent a beautiful picture of Canada Geese flying over the Round Pond.

There are some blossoming bushes in the Flower Walk. A Great Tit perched in some Wintersweet ...

... and a Blue Tit in a Paperbush, Edgeworthia papyrifera. This fragrant shrub is native to the temperate parts of East Asia, and its fibres are used to make high-quality paper. In Japan it is used for banknotes.

Today I went round the Serpentine for the first time since I smashed myself up. There wasn't much to see, but it was good to revisit old friends. The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull was on the prowl in his usual place near the Dell restaurant.

A young Lesser Black-Back wanted the conker an older Herring Gull was playing with, but failed to grab it. It dived for a toy of its own but didn't find one.

The possessive Black-Headed Gull was on the Diana fountain landing stage keeping it clear of all rivals.

The Grey Herons seem to have abandoned their early attempt at nesting. One of last year's young ones stood on the roof of a boathouse.

The Parade Ground has now been completely cleared of the remains of the Wasteland, and returfing will begin soon. The Redwings haven't arrived yet -- I'm sure they will soon. There were only a few Pied Wagtails ...

... and of course the inevitable gulls and a Carrion Crow looking for worms.


  1. That Black-headed Gull is looking pretty handsome in full breeding regalia.

    Good to see progress in that you made it to the Serpentine.

    1. Some people call him Bob, though I prefer to avoid names. He is definitely one of the park characters and it's fun watching him chasing off intruders. Even the geese are afraid of him.

  2. Pleased to hear you're on the mend, Ralph.

  3. [I don't know what happened yesterday, the blog wouldn't publish my comment and I did try two browsers]
    How did the excursion to the Serpentine go? Any aches today?

    1. All went well today, and thank you for asking. Blogger does have these fits of unresponsiveness. Like all products of Google, it's a bit of a mess constantly made worse by rash introduction of supposedly clever new features.