Monday, 2 June 2014

All three Tawny owlets were visible in their usual lime tree, but facing away and there was not a decent photograph to be had. Then their mother father flew into one of the nearby plane trees that line the path, attracted by the screams of Ring-Necked Parakeets, and stared over her his shoulder at them to see if there was any chance of catching one.

Yesterday, Paul Turner had seen how the owl gets them. They have a habit of sitting in the bare branches at the top of some trees.

The owl swept in on silent wings, nearly managing to seize one in passing. It happened too suddenly for him to get a picture, but it there is definitely a chance of one if you see parakeets sitting in vulnerable positions. Today, however, the parakeets stayed in the safety of the leaves, which make it impossible for a bird the size of a Tawny Owl to glide in and grab them.

The male Little Owl was in his usual place in the chestnut tree.

Yesterday owlets were heard calling from the nest hole, so at least some of them have survived the predators so far.

The Coot family from the nest near the north end of the Long Water had come out to sun themselves on the ornamental rocks.

This is quite a good place to see water birds of all kinds, since it is just far away from the Italian Garden for watchers not to scare the birds away, but it is near enough for a reasonable photograph.

The young Coots neat the Serpentine island are now big enough to feed themselves. Here is one of them diving for algae.

The little crayfish in the bottom right corner of the picture was ignored. Evidently Coots have to learn that these are edible when small enough.

The patch of native wildflowers at the back of the Lido swimming area is coming into bloom. Here a bee is taking pollen from a borage flower.

Update: Correction: that's the male Tawny Owl, not the female, and it's him too in Saturday's picture. Look at the white patch just to the left of centre on his chest, and the larger and whiter patch of feathers around his beak. I got so used to seeing the female owl recently that I stopped looking.


  1. It is very interesting that the Tawny Owls are hunting parakeets, especially given that Paul saw this during daylight. Hey, very pretty photo too of the bee in the borage. Lovely colors.

  2. Thanks. Our Tawny Owls break all the rules about breeding seasons and behaviour in daylight. One reason is clearly that they are in an unusual habitat -- which seems to suit them very well, as can be seen from their long lives and many offspring.