Friday 21 July 2023

Three young Blackbirds and a Tufted duckling

The Blackbird pair in the Rose Garden have three young. Here they are, all digging in a flower bed. They are also still begging, as we saw yesterday.

One of them came out on the lawn to take some pine nuts I threw to it.

This young Song Thrush beside the Long Water had also been digging and its head was covered in mud.

Both Little Owlets were visible at the Round Pond.

The female at the Serpentine Gallery was looking sleepy in a lime tree ...

... and her owlet lazily opened an eye to look down from the top of the old chestnut.

Stock Doves are being a nuisance as usual, blocking two holes, but the owls can still get in and out through the broken top of the trunk.

A Tufted Duck on the Long Water had a single duckling. I never saw it here before so I don't know how many there were originally, but here is the last survivor. Mostly I only got a distant view from the bridge, but there was a momentary closer glimpse when they crossed a gap in the waterside plants.

A Red-Crested Pochard drake, now completely in eclipse, still looked striking with its red bill and eye.

The male Mute Swan, on the nesting island with the cygnets, glared at an intruding Grey Heron.

A young heron fished on the Coots' favourite branch at Peter Pan.

A Coot chick grabbed a bit of bread from a parent.

Two more interesting bees from Duncan Campbell. This may be a Lathbury's Nomad Bee, Nomada lathburiana.

And this is probably a Red-Tailed Bumblebee, Bombus lapidarius. Update: confirmed by Conehead 54.

The commoner bees are very consistent in their choice of food plants. There were at least ten Common Carders on the thistle patch at the bottom of Buck Hill ...

... while the Meadow Cranesbill behind the Lido attracted only Buff-Tailed Bumblebees ...

... and Honeybees.


  1. Well, those cygnets are almost as big as the heron. I never thought swans could glare, but they do indeed glare and glower and even frown.

    1. The cygnets are much heavier than the heron, an amazingly skinny bird bulked out by feathers, weighing about the same as a big Mallard.

      Swans may have no facial expressions, but when one is confronted by a dog every feather radiates hostility.

  2. Yes, a male (due to yellow collar) Red-tailed Bumblebee.