Taking the dogs out for their walk on Monday I took them down a lonning we frequently visit. This path is a bridleway that has been tarmaced over with a section bridging a narrow drainage ditch that eventually becomes Row Beck as it runs its course through the fields behind our cottage. The length of the whole bridleway until it reaches the end of a copse can be no more than four hundrd yards, yet its a mecca for birds. Buntings including yellowhammers and reedbuntings play the meadows either side, raptors cruise above and flycatchers wreak havoc amongst the spinning towers of flies. An occassional lapwing or curlew is heard overhead and songbirds abound. This day, however, a special first greeted us as we returned towards the junction with the road. As I neared the bridged section I caught an unmistakable flash of iridescent blue. My heart leapt at the sight. We slowed until approaching the bridge when the bird flew back to the other side of the beck and disappeared.
How wonderful – to be treated to the sight of a kingfisher when not anticipating it. A sight for sore eyes indeed. Apart from their brilliant colour these are still magnificent, mysterious birds so I thought I would have a quick go at rendering one in monochrome.