Monday 8 July 2024

Everyone likes pizza

For years successive generations of Blackcaps have nested in the bushes on the east side of the Long Water near the Italian Garden.  Here a young one looks down from a winged elm  branch.

I think this young bird glimpsed in the bushes near Peter Pan is a Chiffchaff, but I'm far from sure. As you can see from the out-of-focus female Blackcap in the background, it's very small. Later: Tom agrees that it's a Chiffchaff.

A young Song Thrush foraged under a tree near the Queen's Temple. This picture was taken in a very dark spot and is quite grainy, but you can see that it still has juvenile feathers on the back of its head. Thanks to Tom for pointing this out.

A Blackbird in the Rose Garden collected fallen dogwood fruits ...

... for a fledgling in the shrubbery.

The Little Owlet at the Round Pond was on a horse chestnut branch.

Moments later it started to rain, so it took shelter in the hole.

A leftover slice of pizza at the Lido restaurant attracted a mob of Feral Pigeons. When they dropped it on the ground a Grey Heron seized it, but couldn't swallow it so left it for the Canada Geese to squabble over.

The heron chicks on the island got wildly excited when a parent arrived with a crop full of chewed-up fish to feed them.

The Coots which have been nesting for months under the balcony of the Dell restaurant have finally hatched a chick. Only one was showing.

Another long-running Coot nest at the bridge ...

... is now flanked by the massive scaffolding needed to repair the broken stonework, but the Coot has refused to be scared away from its traditional spot.

There is a third pale Greylag at the Round Pond. Like the two on the Serpentine it's of normal size and seems to be a wild bird without any domestic ancestry.

I think the four teenage Egyptian goslings often see at the Lido are a different brood ...

... from the four similar-looking ones at the Vista, three of which appear here. One of these has almost fully grown primary feathers, while the wings of the Lido brood look less developed.

Two Mandarin drakes in eclipse were hanging around the Triangle. They now look almost exactly like females, but have red bills and lack the females' pretty white frame around the eyes.

A fox nosed around in the Dell and found something edible in the grass. Much of their diet consists of worms, beetles and other invertebrates.

A Greenbottle fly wandered over a red flower in the Rose Garden. The plant is an Achillea species, a fancy cultivated form of Yarrow which in its wild state has white flowers.


  1. Pizza must truly be something even for Herons to have a go at it. Who knows, maybe it was looking for the anchovies!

    1. Pizza really does seem to be universally popular. Crows and Starlings also go for it, but there happened to be none around. I think it's the high fat content from the cheese and oil that they detect. I felt sorry for the heron, unequipped by nature for dealing with something wide and flat.

  2. I like pineapple pizza