Tuesday, 14 October 2014

The Ring-Necked Parakeets have discovered that the seeds in the long pods on the catalpa trees near the Italian Garden are edible. They have been pulling the pods off the tree and opening them on the ground. When Eleanor Culver passed by, she found a whole group of them and took this striking picture.


When I came past there were only two, but I got a close shot of how they hold the pod with one foot to rip it open.


There are reports of large numbers of Redwings arriving in London, so I looked over the south end of the Parade Ground and the Archery Field north of Kensington Palce, which are their favourite spots in the park. No sign of them, but on the Archery Field there were two Mistle Thrushes, a pair of Pied Wagtails, half a dozen Magpies and a Green Woodpecker, all hunting for small creatures in the grass.


Later the wagtails flew to the lawn behind the pond in front of Kensington Palace, where there is a rather odd-looking statue of Queen Victoria sculpted by her daughter Princess Louise. Here is the female of the pair having a stretch.


A flock of Long-Tailed Tits flew by on the south side of the Serpentine. A couple of minutes later there were loud purring calls from the top of a willow tree. One of them had not been paying attention and had been left behind, and was calling to re-establish contact with the flock.


Long-Tailed Tits constantly utter their si-si-si flight call as they move through the trees, so that they keep together. They usually make the purring call when perched.

The male Little Owl was in his favourite place in the pair's nest tree.


The male Tawny Owl was in his almost invisible place in the beech tree when I first passed, but later he moved on to the nest tree and settled down in his favourite place on the broken trunk, above the hole where they nest.


This owl is already famous, but now another of the park birds has become a celebrity. The pigeon-eating Lesser Black-Backed Gull has made it into the papers. Here is the Daily Mail's quite full account of his activities. It is not too sensationalist as newspaper stories go, because I sent the journalists a carefully written email, from which they cut and pasted chunks.

Today the gull himself was sitting on the roof of the Dell restaurant, looking for his next chance.

10 comments:

  1. Oh dear, now we do have a celebrity gull!
    Congratulations on sounding like such a voice of reason in such a medium, no mean feat, to be sure.

    ReplyDelete
  2. The pigeon eating gull is even more famous now. He's just been mentioned on the BBC's The One Show. He'll be getting an agent next! Sue

    ReplyDelete
  3. Shame the paper didn't post a link to your blog ! Great story though.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Well, if any of this makes people more aware of birds, it's worthwhile.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I hear that the gull is now in talks with various networks concerning a reality television show.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Working title is Gulls Just Wanna Have Fun.

      Delete
  6. Hi Ralph. I work for BBC Radio and wondered if there was a way I could contact you? We're keen to talk to you about the 'Killer Seagull in Hyde Park! Thanks Kathryn

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Happy to. We've now sorted this out on the telephone.

      Delete
  7. Great job writing up interesting information for the press regarding the gull's free pigeon control services. Clever gull. He looks like the captain of his good ship Dell, sitting there keeping an eye on all those pigeons. Very pretty shot again too of the Gray Wagtail in the leaves. I like the yellow on yellow and gold there. Very seasonal.

    Best wishes for a productive and enjoyable interview with the radio folks tonight!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks. Just off to the Beeb now.

    ReplyDelete