Tuesday 14 February 2023

Two pleasant surprises

Two pleasant surprises today. The sunshine brought out the young male Little Owl at the Round Pond, who perched in a horse chestnut.

The Grey Herons in the top nest on the Serpentine island have unexpectedly produced at least one young bird. You can hear it clattering its bill to beg for food, and at the end of the clip its punk hairdo appears over the edge of the nest for a moment.

I was wrong to doubt their seriousness about nesting in January, though in fairness the nest is so high that you can't see what's going on in it, and a sitting bird can be completely invisible.

The herons in the next tree, spurred on by this example, were busy adding twigs to their nest.

Another heron stood on a high vantage point at the top of a holly beside the Long Water.

A Great Spotted Woodpecker called in an oak next to the leaf yard.

It turned out that there was a pair in the tree.

A Song Thrush sang in a treetop in the fenced area. You could only see him from a distance with the sun directly behind him, so this isn't much of a picture.

There was a flock of perhaps 100 Redwings between the leaf yard and the Speke obelisk so busy looking for insects and worms that they let me get quite close to them in an open space.

But you can get closer to the Redwings on the Parade Ground as they feel safe behind the fence.

The familiar Robin in the Flower Walk was singing at the top of his voice ...

... and was still at it when I came past again three hours later.

The male Chaffinch ...

... and his mate were waiting to catch pine nuts in midair.

A Jay in a privet bush waited to grab a peanut.

Another was preening in a tree near the Speke obelisk.

The Little Grebe in the Italian Garden rested in the irises.

A Great Crested Grebe was fishing in the Serpentine.


  1. oh, what a welcome surprise! Had you seen an owl during your recovery?

  2. I saw the Speke owl on 1 and 22 January, but this is the first time I've seen the Round Pond one this year. He is my particular friend as I've known him since he was a little ball of fluff.