Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Most of the Swifts that were thronging the lake yesterday have left, and there were only about 15 of them high over the Long Water.

On the edge of the Vista a Carrion Crow, having nothing better to do, was amusing itself by harassing a Grey Heron.

The herons' nest at the east end of the Serpentine island has one sitting bird in it, very low in the shallow nest so that you can only see a tiny sliver of grey plumage. A Grey Wagtail was hunting for insects underneath the tree.

Sadly, it seems that the herons have attacked the Great Crested Grebes' nest at the east end of the island. It was deserted today, with a Greylag Goose standing on it. This happens every year: it looks like a promising, sheltered site and a pair of grebes builds here, full of hope. But the water is too shallow, and the herons can wade in. Well, there is plenty of time for the grebes to start another nest in a better place.

Other nest raiders were having a less successful time near the Lookout, where a pair of furious Mistle Thrushes was driving off a pair of Magpies, making that strange mechanical whirring sound unlike the call of any other bird.

A pair of Dunnocks regularly nests next to the ticket office of the Lido. The male was perched in the cover of a bush, and this quiet grey bird would have passed unnoticed if he had not sung a few phrases of his gentle song.

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