Saturday, 1 September 2012

The Coots who nested inside the Serpentine outflow, whose one surviving chick is now fairly large, have decided to build another nest, this time at the top of the wooden ramp that was built for them to get out. Over the past two days they have assembled a large collection of junk and shoved some of it into the ramp. It remains to be seen whether they will persevere with this project. Coots build nests with crazy persistence, often at most unsuitable times. This odd-looking picture was taken looking down vertically from the parapet of the fake bridge at the end of the lake.

In the Italian Gardens, a Mallard was enjoying a shower under one of the fountains. It shows the proverbial truth that you can pour any amount of water over a duck's back without the slightest effect.

The youngest brood of Great Crested Grebes, from the nest near the bridge, have started diving to follow their parents, the first step in learning to hunt. The older ones from the Serpentine island are already fishing independently for much of the time. Their parents will stop feeding them soon, and they will have to fend for themselves. Here is a young grebe doing a bit of reconnaissance, with its big yellow feet spread for an instant dive if there is a fish in sight.

Here is a Holly Blue butterfly on an ivy leaf near the Rima fountain. I know very little about butterflies or moths, and whenever I photograph one there is a frantic Google search to find out what it is.

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