Friday, 17 October 2014

The large yew bush between Peter Pan and the Italian Garden now has a large crop of ripe berries. These had attracted a couple of Blackbirds.

This one is an immature male, hatched this year, as you can see from the subdued colour of his beak. It is impossible to tell whether he is a migrant or from a brood of the park's resident Blackbirds.

There were also several tits here, though they had come to eat insects rather than berries. A Great Tit stared expectantly at me from a twig, expecting to be fed.

And there was a tiny Coal Tit -- the second one I have seen in two days after complaining about how few there were.

The Egyptian Geese on the Round Pond still have all eight young. Their parents had just chivvied them into the rather messy water on the lee side of the pond and were keeping a lookout in either direction as someone passed with a dog on a lead. Careful parents keep their babies alive.

The Little Grebe was still there, fishing busily near the wooden platform. It spends three quarters of its time submerged and, being very small, is easy to overlook.

On the Serpentine a young Great Crested Grebe was preening its shining white underside. The brilliance of its plumage makes the bird less noticeable to fish when it is on the surface.

The male Tawny Owl was out in his usual place in the nest tree by 4 pm. He was still having trouble with flies on quite a warm day, but they will be gone soon.

And the male Little Owl was also in his usual place on the chestnut tree.

More information on large gulls killing Feral Pigeons: a friend reports that she saw a Herring Gull seize and kill a pigeon in the Piazza San Marco in Venice. It was during an acqua alta, a high tide that had flooded the square to a depth of a few inches. The gull's legs were long enough for it to wade on the pavement, so it had a secure foothold as it drowned its victim.


  1. Hello Sir, I am an architecture student studying at UCL. I am right now doing some project about serpentine lake and the birds. After reading your blog I realize you might be the person who knows about the birds most. I have some questions about these birds and i would appreciate it if you can tell me your email address or possibly send me a email and tell me about some facts about the birds. Thank you very much.

    (Email address removed by RH)

    1. Yes, I'd be glad to help. Have replied privately and removed your email address from your comment.