A Hardy Fisherman

No, not the boat but the Common Kingfisher. I was told recently that the kingfisher population took a bit of a hit due to the harshness of the winter here in Spain, something which seemed quite true as I haven´t seen too many, if any, in their usual haunts since the winter. So it was a delight yesterday when from the cruelly hot sun hiding in the shade of the bridge at Alarcos this gem landed on a branch within four metres of me.

It flew away almost immediately and I used the opportunity to get down on my belly again, but this time on dry cracked mud, and make myself as small as possible for when it returned. And return it did, time and again. Of course this female didn´t always land on a branch out on the front of the tree but in the tree, behind branches, leaves etc. Still though, they never go away for long at this time of the evening I find. They land on a branch, spot a fish, catch it, go away to feed the young perhaps, try another spot and 10 minutes later they´re back again. In fact, I have found that watching kingfishers is pretty scheduled and the time between visits to the perch is never too long. Of course you just have to find the spots where they do perch, and that can take a while sitting down doing nothing and just listening for the metallic ping and blue flash. But when there are plenty dragonflies flitting about, Marsh Harriers overhead and Reed Warblers making a racket it´s not very boring. Just hot…

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