Monday, 30 April 2012
A beautiful day, and plenty of new life in the park. The first Coot chick of the year -- just one -- was beside one of the small boathouses being fed by a parent.
There were nine new Mallard ducklings in the reeds west of the Lido, reasonably safe for a while in this cover.
The nearby Mute Swans' nest has had eggs in it since the beginning of the month, and they should hatch soon. The young Grey Herons have still not left their nest on the island.
Starlings from two nests in the lakeside plane trees west of the small boathouses were making bee lines across the lake to snatch potato chips from the plates of the diners at the Lido restaurant and bring them back for their chicks. In Kensington Gardens, the starlings' nest in the Tawny Owls' tree is full of chicks clamouring loudly to be fed.
One very brief glimpse of an owlet flying from tree to tree. As soon as it landed it became invisible among the leaves. Paul saw the male Little Owl for a short time early this morning. That is the best time to see him, often on the ground looking for worms.
And a momentary sight of a female Pied Flycatcher flying over the Long Water near the Italian Gardens, doing a brisk 180° turn to grap a passing insect.
There was a Goldcrest bathing on the edge of the waterfall at the top of the Dell. This place, easily visible from the path, is a favourite bathing place for small birds, but scaffolding is going up to repair the parapet and it will be no use for a while.