The Little Owl was out in his usual tree, staring at the assembled photographers. We hope we shall be able to see some owlets around here in a month or so.
But no sight of the Tawny Owls today despite several people looking for them, and it seems increasingly likely that they have moved to a new location. We looked at other tall evergreens in the Flower Walk without result. The birds will probably move back to their usual area fairly soon, but maybe not until the leaves have come out on the Horse Chestnut trees that are their preferred places.
A Sparrowhawk flew over, followed a few minutes later by a Peregrine. Between the leaf yard and the statue of Physical Energy there was a dead Mallard which, when discovered, was being ripped apart by three Carrion Crows. It is most unlikely that they had killed it. Maybe the Peregrine had done it and been unable to lift the heavy bird or had been driven off the kill by some disturbance. Maybe the duck had been killed on the ground by a dog. There were feathers scattered all over a wide area.
There were plenty of Greenfinches singing in the trees beside the Long Water.
There was also song from several Chiffchaffs and at least two Willow Warblers, though I was not lucky enough to see any of these. But I did see and hear several Treecreepers and a Nuthatch, all singing.
In the leaf yard a pair of Stock Doves were exploring a possible nest hole.
There is a fair-sized colony of these birds in the area around the southwest corner of the leaf yard and the Tawny Owls' nest tree.
Tufted Ducks are adopting their courting posture, stretching their necks up to look as tall as possible. There is a lot of courting behaviour and little groups engaged in competitive flying, but sadly on this lake it never seems to result in any of their pretty chocolate brown ducklings.
Numbers of Black-Headed Gulls are noticeably down over the past few days. Usually they are almost all gone by the end of March, but this has not been a normal year. Numbers of Common Pochard are down to half a dozen, and there was only one pair of Red-Crested Pochard. After I had fed them on one side of the Serpentine they saw me on the other side, and came briskly over for some more.