Thursday 20 July 2023

Young Blackbirds

A young Blackbird in the Rose Garden begged its father to feed it.

There were two young Blackbirds here, and I managed to get the other one to pick up raisins thrown on the ground. The young ones are much less nervous than adults. Blackbirds love raisins, and with luck I have made a friend.

The Little owlet at the Serpentine Gallery was also begging, though there was nothing I could do for it.

It looked down warily. Little owlets are nervous from the start, hardly surprising for a species that keeps getting mobbed by other birds -- even tiny Blue Tits will have a go at an owl.

I managed to photograph the adult male at the Round Pond from quite close without scaring him back into his hole. After all we have known each other for two years.

The young Carrion Crow in the Egyptian Garden is still begging, but getting no reaction from its parents now.

A young Robin hopped around in a bush near the Henry Moore sculpture.

On the other side of the lake a young Long-Tailed Tit inspected a spider web.

A picture by Ahmet Amerikali of a Grey Heron in flight, with its neck pulled back into a U bend as usual.

The day before yesterday I saw another heron flying with its neck stretched straight out, though this time it was too high to photograph. The previous one seen in this posture on 16 April fooled several people, including me, into thinking it was a White Stork.

A young Moorhen prowled along the edge of the Serpentine picking tiny edible creatures out of the algae.

The two in the Dell stream seem to not to have made any attempt to breed. One of them is a different individual from last year, and they may be the same sex.

The two Mute cygnets on the Long Water suddenly rushed up the lake for no apparent reason. Maybe they were just playing.

The five on the Serpentine are much younger and still downy.

The Egyptian Geese on the Long Water rested on the gravel with their four goslings.

A Mallard passed with four small ducklings.

Sad to say, the Mandarin on the Round Pond only has two ducklings left.

A fox reclined in the Dell. They know they are safe behind the fence and don't care if people stare at them.

Red Admiral butterflies are out all over the park. One posed obligingly on the edge of the Serpentine.

And there are still some Commas.

A Batman hoverfly on a thistle showed very clearly how it got its name.


  1. I am rooting for the Blackbird to befriend you!

    Once the young Carrion Crow starts to find the enthusiasm to feed itself, will the relationship with its parent continue? And how about the Fox looking comfortably relaxed in that position!

    1. Crow families may stay together for some time.

    2. Yes, I did ponder that thought as knowing they are social creatures!

  2. It's been an incredible few weeks for Red Admirals. I haven't visited anywhere recently without seeing any. More than I've seen for some years. No doubt many are migrants.

    Generally good numbers of butterflies around. The other day I was around home for quite a few hours after an early mothing session & the garden was alive with butterflies the whole day with 10 species & a garden record of 9 Peacocks on the Buddlejas & Hemp Agrimony in particular. Last summer I was frustrated in seeing so few butterflies in the garden.

    Lovely shot of the Batman Hoverfly, one of my favourites. Did see at least a couple at the London Wetland Centre yesterday.

    1. Yes, I've never seen so many Red Admirals. There were at least 15 on my usual circuit of the park. Also a great many small hoverflies, I think mostly Marmalade, in the shade under the trees. But even when they are staying still in the air and sunlit against a shadowed background they are nearly impossible to photograph, as they are too small for the autofocus to grab.

    2. Yes lots of Marmalade Flies recently. Though a resident species, numbers can be vastly swollen by immigrants & suspect the same weather conditions brought these along with the Red Admirals & also quite a few Silver-Ys.

    3. Remarkable that such small flies and moths should be able to cross the Channel, though I am less surprised by the Red Admirals which are strong flyers. We have had some quite brisk east winds in recent days to help them all across.

  3. I do hope you made a new friend. I wish it knew how much (international) admiration it'll gain just by being friends with you!
    I must be so frustrating to know that the owlet was hungry (or at least peckish) and you couldn't give him nothing.
    Now i'd like to see a Blue Tit mobbing a Little Owl. It promises to be epic.

    1. It takes quite a lot of Blue Tits to mob an owl, but I've seen it happen, and the swarming scolding mob can drive the owl away.