Sunday 7 April 2024


A walk round the park with Tom and Jayanta today, always good because they spot things I miss. Tom saw a small bird whizzing into a hole in an iron fence post at the edge of Rotten Row. It was a Great Tit nesting inside the hollow post. The hole is there because the post is next to a gap in the fence. Otherwise it would have a tubular rail stuck in it.

In past years I've seen Great Tits nesting in an iron bollard and in the base of a lamp post. They'll use anything that has a suitable sized hole.

There's a second Long-Tailed Tits' nest in the top of the pergola in the Rose Garden. It's very near the first one. Possibly the birds abandoned this because it turned out too small. They're still building the new one.

A Blue Tit sang in a bush in the Rose Garden.

A visit to the park wouldn't be complete without feeding the Coal Tit at Mount Gate.

A Blackcap sang in the alders near the Italian Garden. More Siskins have been reported here, but we were out of luck with them today. There have also been reports of Sedge Warblers, but we didn't hear any.

In the hawthorn next to them, a Dunnock caught a midge.

A pair of Starlings were clearly fond of each other next to their nest hole in the small plane tree by the boathouses. Let's hope they manage to keep the Rose-Ringed Parakeets from grabbing the hole.

A Stock Dove fed on the ground near the Serpentine Gallery. It picked up a small round slightly hairy green thing that I couldn't identify.

One of the young Grey Herons was fishing at the east end of the island ...

... and the other was in the Dell. They've been independent for a while now, and it looks as if they are both managing to feed themselves.

The Coots nesting in the planter in the Italian Garden now have nine chicks, though you can only see eight of them at a time in this video.

The Egyptian Geese at the Lido had kept their single gosling alive for another day.

Both Mute Swans were at their nest by the Serpentine outflow. The female stood up but only three eggs were visible -- there may well be more, as you have to view the nest from a shallow angle.

Someone had been feeding a swan with raw vegetables, which it seemed to like. The heron had looked at them and rejected them.

The Mallard at the boathouse still has six ducklings. People were feeding them. bringing a swan dangerously close, but fortunately it didn't attack them.

A Brimstone butterfly settled on a bluebell at Peter Pan.

Two more insects: a very small bee, maybe a Halictus species, which landed on Jayanta's rucksack ...

... and a beetle that took a walk on his finger. This is an Alder Leaf Beetle, Agelastica alni. The identification is almost certain as it was under an alder tree.

Snakeshead Fritillaries come up every year near the Henry Moore sculpture.


  1. Hi Ralph, some remarkable pics today..(even by your standards!).great to see the Egyptian gosling survive another day !!....I find your insect pics very interesting indeed !...the most exciting things that happend to me today were the sighting of a chiffchaff up close and a weasel scuttling across the path right in front of me !...regards,Stephen...

    1. Thank you for your kind words. Where was the path? Weasels aren't really city creatures, and I've never seen one farther into town than Rainham Marshes.

  2. The resourcefulness of birds is amazing.If something exists, there's a bird prepared to either eat it or nest in it.
    I agree Ralph sets the bar so high every day, and yet he continues to raise it.

  3. Hi again Ralph, the path in question is NOWHERE near London !!.... It's in Cheshire !!..... Near the river's where the barn owls I help to look after are...regards,Stephen .....