Sunday, 28 September 2014

Regent's Park - 23rd September, 14

Weather: Warm and sunny with blue skies. Some cloud later on.

Birds seen:
Great Crested Grebe; Little Grebe; Cormorant; Grey Heron; Mute Swan; Whooper Swan; Greylag Goose; Barnacle Goose; Shelduck; Canada Goose; Egyptian Goose; Mallard; Wigeon; Gadwall; Tufted Duck; Pochard; Red-crested Pochard; Mandarin Duck; Wood Duck; Goldeneye; Smew; Peregrine Falcon; Moorhen; Coot; Black-headed Gull; Herring Gull; Lesser Black-backed Gull; Woodpigeon; Feral Pigeon; Ring-necked Parakeet; Great Spotted Woodpecker (H); Grey Wagtail; Wren (H); Robin; Wheatear; Blackbird; Blackcap (H); Chiffchaff (H); Blue Tit; Great Tit; Long-tailed Tit (H); Magpie; Jay; Carrion Crow. Argentine Teal; Bufflehead; Chestnut Teal; Hooded Merganser; Ruddy Shelduck. Total: 49

Plus: Large White, Speckled Wood butterflies.
Plus: Common Darter, Migrant Hawker dragonflies.
Plus: Grey Squirrel; Red-eared Terrapin.
Plus: Bee; Crane Fly; Flesh Fly; Hoverfly; Midge; Nursery Web Spider; Pond Skater;

Today I met up with friends from the RSPB Forum, including Marianne, Shane and TJ. We had all arranged to meet up with each other and at the same time, pay a visit to Regent's Park.

It was my first proper visit to the Park and I left feeling very impressed. I arrived at Baker Street in good time but I made a mistake with the meet-up point. I hung around at Clarence Bridge before walking further on and seeing Marianne and Shane at the intended meet-up point, York Bridge. Most of the rest arrived soon after. Two, including TJ, were going to be late.

Regent's Park is the best of the Royal Parks in Central London. It offers a variety of habitats from formal gardens to lakes, scrub, woodland and rough grassland with wildflower beds. There are about 22 pairs of resident Grey Herons in the park.

We made a tour of the Park seeing a variety of birds, all of which I had seen before at nearby WWT Barnes. The bird(s) of the day were undoubtedly a pair of Wheatears.

There were quite a few people about, probably because it was a really nice day. Only a few butterflies were seen today plus the usual dragonfly suspects that appear around this time of the year.

We all moved off down the path back past Clarence Bridge, where there were lots of geese on show, including several Egyptian Geese, towards the bandstand, which was surrounded by deckchairs. Here we saw Whooper Swans gliding serenely by. There were Barnacle and Egyptian Geese here too, amongst lots of Gulls.

We had heard that a pair of Wheatear were seen out on the open area by some football pitches and, sure enough, we spotted both perched up on the posts. They allowed us to get fairly close.

From here we walked down to Long Bridge to see the park's collection of waterfowl. This included, Bufflehead; Smew; Mergansers and Shelducks. Red-crested Pochard; Mandarin and Wood Ducks could be seen too. Unfortunately, they kept their distance with only a few venturing in close.

This was the point where we seemed to lose a few people and our number shrank back down to around half-a-dozen. We decided to head for the park’s ornamental waterfowl area. Unfortunately, they had all been removed for some unknown reason.

We spent about 5 hours walking around the area before exhaustion forced us to call it a day and head home.

On the way back to Baker Street station we passed 221b. We didn't call in.

It was a great day out and maybe worth a visit during the winter.