A Labour Of Love.

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Dale.
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Those of you who know me here by now will know all about my passion for kingfishers. I've spent quite a lot of time over this last year or so trying to photograph my local ones, all within a few miles of home. I even went to the extent of getting Schedule 1 licenced at a nest site for this season. That pair have fledged a brood last week and are now moving onto their 2nd brood. Ironically, I never manged to photograph them properly, they kicked my butt, as did the site. I got images of them but nothing I'd show off, those images will be mainly for my licence returns when the time comes.

I had been aware of another nest though, (the adjoining territory to my licenced site) but couldn't visit it as a licence only covers you at one site. Long story short, I watched the river away from the nest site but still within the probable territory. I managed to pin down a frequently used perch and I've seen the kingfishers use it on 4 occasions. I've been sat at this perch now for the last 3 afternoons and evenings and tonight, I got my 15 seconds with the male.

No bait used and the perch had been lying in the river for weeks, placed there by the river

Canon M5, Sigma 150-600C.

Happy days.

Kingfisher. by Dale, on Flickr
 
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Mo
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:clap:Looking forward to more kingfisher shots, this one is superb.
 
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Keith
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Dale, well done!
 
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thomas
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Great photo. Well done for the perseverance. They must see you as a family member now!
 
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Dale.
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5,632
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Dale.
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Great work Dale and so satisfying I bet after all that work
Thanks Adam.


A Stunner Dale love the darker bg

Cheers Kevin.


It does take time and patience for sure, what a learning curve it's been but well worth it. This one has probably been about 18 months in the making. There is a very rudimentary footpath along this stretch of river which altogether, is about 4 miles in length. It contains at least 2 nest sites and possibly another. Despite the footpath though, these kingfishers are not that used to humans as the footpath isn't used much. Even less so now it's overgrown.

That has been the challenge I think, together with finding the fishing spots. Yesterday was a revelation though, I got the image, albeit just 15 seconds or so with the bird. I also saw it perching elsewhere and also far enough away from the nest that I can comfortably photograph it if I choose to as this bird is from a nest I'm not licenced at. Once I'd got the image, I left the spot and headed to my licenced nest site about 2 miles away along the mentioned footpath. I saw at least 3 young birds there, albeit fleetingly. Also, a perch I'd left out near (ish) to that nest now has droppings on it. I was out of time to spend there as it was getting dark and it was a bit of a trudge back to the car but I feel the last 18 months or so all came together on one afternoon/evening. I've photographed kingfishers here pre pandemic but this has been a whole new reset, like starting all over again. I feel this is my best image so far. There are 2 other images from 2019 that I'm proud of and one other from 2019 but that wasn't so local and on private land.

I'll be leaving the spot in peace for a few days now, the local natives have been noticing my presence and a few have asked what I've been doing, always an awkward moment for me. My being there might also draw attention to the site.

I need to move onto other things now too, my landscapes have suffered between lockdowns and time spent with the kingfishers. A change is good as a holiday but I will still hopefully spend time with the kingfishers but maybe, not quite as much.
 
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