Tony McLean's East Yorkshire Wildlife Diary

Wildlife photography in East Yorkshire

A Concentration of Kingfishers



I’ve been visiting Tophill Low on most evenings during the past week or so. The Sparrowhawks continue to scream their presence in ‘D’ woods and frighten off most of the smaller birds. I’ve not had much luck during the evenings but Kingfishers have paid sporadic visits to North Marsh. In fact, two fledgling Kingfishers appeared yesterday morning, full of youthful enthusiasm and almost a year to a day since their first showing last year. I enjoyed watching the youngsters develop their angling skills. How do I know they were juvenile birds? Well, to be frank—they were both pretty useless at fishing. One young bird surfaced with a water-snail (see picture below) examined its hard shell for a few seconds and then dropped it back into the lake. Several other attempts to catch a fish were also unsuccessful. Eventually, it did catch a small minnow at which point, I almost felt like clapping in celebration. Another ‘give-away’ behaviour that immature Kingfishers exhibit is frequently landing on the ground instead of a perch.


Kingfisher fledgling with water-snail

So, if you want to see the Kingfishers at Tophill Low then you will need to go armed with a big bagful of patience. Maybe, the situation will improve when the two young Sparrowhawks are fully fledged and fly-off to their new territory. We’ll just have to wait and see…

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4 thoughts on “A Concentration of Kingfishers

  1. Roristy on said:

    Stunning Kingfisher shots Tony!

  2. David seaton on said:

    you can tell they are young if the legs are more brown than bright orange

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