It would appear that our Kingfisher family has fledged. The female had been missing for ten days and the male was still frantically feeding the chicks. A bit of research suggested that she may well be sitting on a second clutch somewhere while he finishes off the first brood before heading off to join her so we were keeping our fingers crossed that all was well and that she had not fallen to a predator.
On Saturday morning he was seen arriving at the burrow with a fish; he entered and came out again with the fish and then spent 20 minutes outside, calling and moving from perch to perch and even sitting on the window sill and hide roof!
Off he went with the fish and stayed away for some time. The weather was terrible at the time. When he returned in the late afternoon, he again took a fish into the burrow and brought it back out and waited.
Rather than suspecting that the chicks had perished, we reckon that he was trying to tempt them out as it was only a couple of days short of what we thought as the fledging date. The rest of Saturday was clear, bright and dry (although it was still very windy) and he would have had over four hours after we left to persuade these canny youngsters to face the big brave world.....
A superb shot taken by Dominic Mitchell
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