Saturday, 29 September 2012
The Hobbies are still in the park. At the bottom end of the Serpentine I heard what I thought was one of them calling, but there were gulls screaming at the same pitch and I discounted it. Five minutes later, as I was walking along the upper edge of the Dell, an adult and a youngster whirled overhead, briefly glimpsed between the trees lining the path, and flew away towards Hyde Park Corner. They didn't reappear and were probably perched in a tree. So now they have been seen at opposite corners of the park, and evidently their hunting ground extends over its whole area.
The early arrived Shovellers were visible at the top of the Long Water, from the balustrade of the Italian Gardens. More will be coming soon.
And one of the Little Grebes was fishing under the willow tree. When the Shovellers swam off it followed them at a distance of a few feet, perhaps hoping that they would stir up some aquatic creature that could be seized.
On the other side of the balustrade, a Moorhen was climbing precariously on the steep slope of a stone volute. But it never missed its footing.
Here a Black-Headed Gull chases a Coot that had been luck enough to grab a piece of bread thrown by a visitor. The Coot, realising that running was no use, dived instead, and when it bobbed up again like a cork a few seconds later, as Coots do, the gull had gone.