Our swan family are down to just two cygnets – or they were two weeks ago when our swan-watcher caught them having lunch down by South End Green.
As you can see the two remaining cygnets are now almost entirely clad in white feathers which presumably means that they are now fully adult and will also be off very soon to allow their parents to start work on a new family.
Over on the other side of the heath, by the Kenwood lake, it was Egyptian geese who were busy feeding in the mud.
They were, as you can see, totally unphased about being filmed – just ‘huh’-huh’ing at me or at the world in general as they waddled off. According to Wikipedia the geese are ‘largely terrestrial and will perch readily on trees and buildings….. and typically eat seeds, leaves, grasses, and plant stems….. Both sexes are aggressively territorial towards their own species when breeding and frequently pursue intruders into the air, attacking them in aerial “dogfights”. Egyptian geese have been observed attacking aerial objects such as drones that enter their habitat as well…… Egyptian geese usually pair for life. Both the male and female care for the offspring until they are old enough to care for themselves.’ If you want to know more, see this article a few years ago in the Guardian.
In the woods behind the lake it was the parakeets who were in full voice. It was a fairly miserable soggy afternoon so I apologise for the mud-squidge of my boots and for the rather dreary woods.
And finally some more tuneful birds in my garden this morning (again apologies for background noise – this time rush hour on Hampstead Lane) and a rather more cheerful sunny tree to remind us that the sun did shine two days ago!