Friday, 10 October 2014

Kingfisher poses at Arundel

Kingfisher, male, Alcedo atthis
On Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I attended a First Aid at Work course. With a few hours left on Wednesday afternoon I headed to Arundel WWT with Sue for some outdoor therapy, following up with visits on Thursday and today. Each day I saw a pair of Kingfishers whizzing around. From my vantage point in the Sand Martin hide I saw them zooming left to right, right to left and back and forth across the lake. 
 On Wednesday one landed on the high post in front of the hide, but I only saw it briefly as it flew off. On Thursday, between torrential showers, a male Kingfisher landed on the same post and stayed for a record four seconds, during which time I managed to squeeze off five shots. Some swallows appeared briefly and dipped their beaks into the water.
 This morning Sue joined me and I saw a weasel run across the path by the garden area near the Sand Martin hide. It then ran around the garden, reappearing and disappearing very fast. There were many more Kingfisher sightings from the hide.

Yesterday I received news that the lake at Warnham Nature Reserve at Horsham had been drained inadvertently on Monday by the Environment Agency, creating an ecological disaster for that wonderful reserve. It was only recently that I was watching two Kingfishers battling in front of the first hide. It will probably take years for the lake to recover, and the ecosystem to return to its former state. News reports covering this story:
Tuesday sunset
Black-headed Gull, Chroicocephalus ridibundus
Kingfisher, Alcedo atthis
female Mallard, Anas platyrhynchos 

Lake Swanbourne millpond
Sand Martin hide
Chaffinch, Fringilla coelebs with legs and feet deformed by cnemidocoptic mites
Coot, Fulica atra
Cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo
Cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo
Dunnock, Prunella modularis
Gadwall, Anas strepera
Great Tit, Parus major
Kingfisher, Alcedo atthis
this is the full height version of the photo above
the 5th photo in the series
Moorhen, Gallinula chloropus
Mute Swan, Cygnus olor
Swallow, Hirundo rustica
Cormorant, Phalacrocorax carbo
The swan chased the Greylag. Yesterday he chased a coot.
Greylag Goose, Anser anse
Mute Swan and cygnet, Cygnus olo
Mute Swan, Cygnus olor
female Tufted Ducks, Aythya fuligula
elusive Weasel, Mustela nivalis

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