Saturday 8 June 2024

Two Little Owls

The female Little Owl at the Serpentine Gallery was calling from a small lime tree. There are lots of similar trees here and she could have been in any of them, so I wouldn't have found her if she had stayed quiet.

The male owl at the Round Pond was also in a lime tree, one of his usual perches.

Two Chiffchaffs were calling to each other near the Henry Moore sculpture.

A Wood Pigeon had a hard time finding the last few berries remaining in a serviceberry bush, and eventually over-reached and fell out.

A Jay in the Flower Walk waited for a peanut.

There are Robin families all over the park. At the southwest corner of the bridge, an adult came out to collect pine nuts for its young from the railings ...

... while its mate arrived with a caterpillar.

A young Robin hopped about at the top of the steps at the northwest corner of the bridge.

The young Grey Heron which I filmed yesterday swimming was on the path below. It came right up to me, hoping to be fed. But all I had was peanuts, which it rejected.

Nevertheless, it followed me up the steps. The adult heron is the one that usually perches on the handrail.

The heron chicks on the island weren't visible, but evidently they are still around as a parent was looking down into the nest.

Pigeon Eater's mate was having a through wash on the Serpentine. She spent at least five minutes rinsing and flapping, and this video shows only the last 30 seconds before she finished and flew off.

Pigeon Eater himself was nearby, but not doing anything worth filming.

This foolishly sited Coot's nest was in an even sillier place than usual as it was in the middle of a crowd of Canada and Greylag Geese, and a Carrion Crow added to the chaos by coming down to bathe.

The lake is covered with geese come to moult. Towards the back of this picture you can see three Canada x Greylag hybrids ...

... and here is a closer view of them. A fourth hybrid, not shown here, is a permanent resident and the partner of a pure Canada.

The Black Swan was near the Dell restaurant. He mingles with the Mute Swans but hasn't formed a new relationship since his white girlfriend dumped him.

The swan from the nest at the Lido restaurant terrace was begging for food from the diners. I haven't seen the third, younger cygnet that Ahmet Amerikali spotted with it. Could it have strayed temporarily from the other pair farther down the lake?

The other seemed to have only one cygnet, but the female was sitting on the path and may have had the other under her wing.

The female on the Long Water was by the nesting island with her six. I didn't see her murderous mate, who was evidently off on a bullying expedition.


  1. The Peregrines were there around midday.

    1. Thanks. I'm pretty sure they're the same as the ones on the barracks, from which they have been absent since the beginning of May.

  2. I like to believe that the Little Owl was willingly calling so you'd see her. She knows you, and probably expects you.
    I just can't get over the image of a Heron calmly walking up to you to ask for food. It just does my head in. They're so skittish and wary here, they'll take off if you get within 50 metres of them.

    1. It's a young heron, naive and seeking new experiences, as seen from yesterday's swimming expedition. I do regret not have had anything it liked. Mostly they are omnivores in the sense of eating everything in sight -- see today's picture of one eating bits of tangerine -- but little hard nuts don't appeal.

  3. Nice, went to see the little owl at the round pond after a year and he landed right next to us in the lime tree as we arrived.We only stayed 5 minutes for a few shots as we did not want to disturb them if they are nesting. Hopefully we will get to see the owlets branching in a few weeks. Never been able to find the other pair. Not sure about what happened to the pair near the statue across the lake? They were my very first UK little owls. Do you know if it might be one of those pairs?

    1. Do you mean the pair by the Henry Moore sculpture? Those were one of the three pairs that arrived together in 2012. Last seen in 2020, presumed dead of old age.

      The Serpentine Gallery male showed up today -- see today's blog.

      By the way, if you comment on old posts very few people will see your comments. Always best to go for the latest one, whatever your subject.