Tuesday, 24 November 2015

A second-winter Great Black-Backed Gull was perched on a post near Peter Pan, dwarfing the Black-Headed Gull on the next post. This is the first time we have seen this bird, as the young one seen in previous years is now nearly grown up.

A Black-Headed Gull was showing no respect for Edward Jenner, the inventor of vaccination against smallpox, who is honoured with a statue in the Italian Garden.

Roman statues used to have a little bronze umbrella called a meniscus attached to the top of the head. This would have looked ridiculous to us, but they were used to it and it kept bird droppings off -- a serious matter for Roman statues, which were painted and couldn't be scrubbed clean.

The Black Swan and his girlfriend were together at the Lido. There were no other swans near, and they were taking advantage of the peaceful moment to do a bit of preening.

This is Blondie the Egyptian Goose with her mate. She is still just 50 yards from the place in the reeds where she first saw the light of day. She went to the Round Pond once, didn't like it and came home.

The Teal has again changed a lot since he was last seen two days ago. As well as the developing adult colours on his head, he has more black and white vermiculated plumage on his sides.

This is one of the Moorhens hatched in the Italian Garden in spring, and still there with the rest of the family. It is very nearly in its full colours, though still a little browner than an adult, and only a hint of duskiness remains in its bill and feet.

A Cormorant was looking for fish in the wire baskets near the bridge.

A Grey Heron was scratching its ear on a tree beside the Long Water.

The shore near the Dell restaurant was crowded with people visiting the funfair, but two Pied Wagtails were ignoring them and running up and down the shore. They are shy when stared at, but no one noticed them.

The berries on the rowan trees on Buck Hill are getting scanty after visits from many kinds of birds. Here is a Starling finishing off a bunch.


  1. Rather liked the serious portrait of the young moorhen; thank you.
    When visiting a medical centre in the concrete jungle with faux nature that is the Olympic Park today, I saw a few Pied Wagtails, just on the street, picking at invisible (to my eye) things on the pavement. Much to my pleasant surprise.

  2. should have said: 'especially liked' . Your photos are always worth looking at.

    1. Thanks. It was a rather dull day, though, and I didn't get any good pictures. There was a streetwise Pied Wagtail in Queensway a couple of years ago, running around people's ankles and among the moving cars, sure that its speed would get it out of trouble. It would come and take little bits of cheese thrown on to the pavement.

  3. Hi Ralph
    thanks for the blog which I have just discovered - very informative and enjoyable. In case it is of interest, last week there were eight rose-ringed parakeets feeding on the fruit from a crab apple tree on the north side of Hyde Park between Lancaster Gate and Marble Arch.


    1. Thanks. The parakeets now seem to have spread right to the farthest corner of the park from their original territory in Kensington Gardens. It took them a surprisingly long time to do this.