Wednesday, 8 April 2015

One of the two pairs of Grey Herons was back in the nest on the Serpentine island. This has been an on-off attempt at nesting, and they may give up again. But today the female heron was sitting on her nest, and the male was climbing on the wire baskets pulling twigs off the bushes. He scared away a Coot.

Then he flew up to the nest carrying a twig and the birds mated, a precarious business involving much climbing and flapping to maintain their balance.

A Moorhen was standing on the Mute Swans' nest island on the Long Water in a place where a Coot wanted to get ashore -- it is a bit of a leap up to the edge so a low place is preferable. The Moorhen wouldn't get out of the way, so the Coot jumped at it and chased it all round the island while the sitting swan crossly stared at the intruders.

Another Coot nesting near Peter Pan had decorated its nest with a blue crisp packet. Coots love bright colours, though their favourites are red and metallic silver.

The Egyptian Goose family from the Lido have lost another chick and are down to six. They are guarding their young as well as they can, but the lake offers little cover and there are a lot of Herring Gulls.

The Scaup was at the east end of the Serpentine, and obligingly came over when I threw some bits of biscuit in the water.

A Blackbird was singing in the sunshine on a bramble stem near Peter Pan.

The Cetti's Warblers could be heard and briefly seen, but no one managed to get a picture of these furtive little creatures.

The male Little Owl was again in the next tree up the hill from last year's nest tree. When he heard people talking he came out to look, unlike his mate who flees inside at the approach of humans.


  1. Ralph, what do you think is happening with the tawny owls? I know that last year the owlets appeared much later than expected, in May, but the father was regularly seen, unlike this year, when it seems that he has disappeared.

    1. They seem to be off to the west of their nest tree. The male has been heard and seen in that area. It also seems that they have hidden their owlets very well, maybe in a hollow tree. As soon as anything is found, of course I'll post it on the blog.

  2. Q. What if a moorhen mated with a coot?
    A. That's a moot point! Jim n.L.