Saturday, 5 April 2014

The Special One !!!

A flash of brilliant blue along stream or reed bed, is probably the most opportunist view of this beautiful bird if you're lucky, sometimes its high pitched whistle will attract your attention as it passes by unseen.

 Always a special bird to see, and a favourite of most people who love the countryside.

Last year at Rainham RSPB reserve, a pair of Kingfishers took up residence and were watched and photographed by many fortunate people, the story did not have a happy ending however, it was believed that a marauding fox discovered the breeding tunnel, and during the night dug out the female Kingfisher and her brood, killing them all.

 The male Kingfisher was seen to return to the site with a fish the next morning, only to discover the devastated scene.
 It was seen to fly off, a tragic end.

This year looks more promising for the Kingfishers,  much of the flood including the Kingfisher bank has been protected with fox proof fencing, there is also some electric fencing protecting the actual bank where the Kingfishers nested previously.

The adjacent Discovery  zone provides an excellent viewing point alongside the Kingfisher bank, which is well camouflaged internally to prevent disturbance by those viewing the Kingfishers.

The story so far this year.

The male Kingfisher was seen on several occasions surveying the newly formed kingfisher bank, obviously to his liking as he begun to excavate several tunnels, three in all.

A female was attracted to the site,  she eventually selected the most suitable tunnel.

Both male and female have been visiting the site regularly and I think its assumed that eggs have been laid.
When I say that they are visiting regularly, they are still not easy to connect with, hopefully the chances will improve when the brood is being fed.

I have visited on several occasions now, finally seeing the male Kingfisher as it exited the tunnel and perched on tree branch placed there especially for this purpose.

It was only there for about thirty seconds before flying off, but I managed to get a couple of photographs through the glass and netting.

Not exactly frame filling, but at least "the special one" showed himself at last.

Satisfied that I had at last seen the Rainham Kingfisher, I went for a stroll around the reserve in the warm spring sunshine.

Plenty to see at the moment, grass snakes , lizards, marsh frogs.
This Water Vole was feeding next to the   boardwalk completely unconcerned by my presence.

Lots of Butterflies to be seen, mainly Peacock , I did see four or five Brimstones, and two Orange tipped Butterflies, but they never settled long enough for a photograph, I couldn't resist this Peacock Butterfly sunning itself though.

All around the reserve there seems to be birds nesting, Moorhen Coot , Little Grebes, Lapwings and this Mute Swan.

Still looking for that full plumaged great crested grebe

Summer migrants are arriving,  looking forward to my next visit and hopefully catching up with the Kingfishers again.

1 comment:

  1. Let's hope this years king fishers have more luck, what a sad story