Monday, 16 July 2012
Yes, we do have a Red-Breasted Flycatcher. My friends Malcolm and Ko, who had seen the mysterious bird yesterday, listened to recordings of its song and went back to the same place this morning to make sure of the identification. It was a little to the west of where they had found it yesterday, still near the Bayswater Road but opposite the Lancasters, that newly done-up Victorian terrace.
I went there a bit later and the bird had gone back to the Forsyth memorial, and was singing intermittently in the dense bushes. I didn't manage to see it, but the song is unmistakable. Here is a YouTube clip showing a Red-Breasted Flycatcher singing. What a pleasing bird to find at a slow time of year.
The Great Crested Grebes from the Serpentine island had brought their chicks out to near the Bluebird boat hire jetty, and were busy feeding them, finding quite a lot of fish of a suitable size.
One of the chicks got too pushy, and was chased off.
But of course its parent relented and carried on catching food for it. The young birds have reached the stage where they look underwater and dive to follow their parents. They will follow them more and more closely on their fishing expeditions, and in this way will learn to hunt themselves.
A pair of Coots have built a nest on the east side of the Vista, using a fallen branch as a support. Here one of the parents carefully turns over the eggs to make sure that they are kept evenly warmed.
Beside the Serpentine, one of the blond Greylag Geese was carefully preening its elegantly pale new wing feathers.