A contribution to Becky’s July Squares: Blue challenge.
This is a Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) also known as the Eurasian Kingfisher and River Kingfisher. The colour has been described as blue-green upperparts with pale azure-blue back and rump. I have noticed that the blue colours changes depending on quality and direction of the light falling on the bird.
Interestingly enough, the feathers aren’t blue, they contain no pigments. The colour is produced by the fine surfaces of the feathers interfering with the wavelengths of light. That is presumably why the colours can change depending on the light.
ThIs is my contribution to the Wits End Weekly Photo Challenge: Oh, the Place You’ll Go.
The challenge brought back memories of a question I posed on a photography forum some years ago. I asked what people would like to go back to photograph with modern equipment?
Having been a photographer since the late 1970s there’s quite a list of locations and situations that I would like to photograph again varying from motorsports to wildlife spectacles. I would have great fun re-shooting any of the selections below.
In the early 1980s I was living in London, England and traveling around Europe in the summer photographing motorcycle endurance racing. Team Bike at the Le Mans 24 hour motorcycle race, France in 1982.
In the mid 1980s I was visiting Scotland to photograph nature and landscapes for photo libraries. A light beam on a hillside, Loch Arkaig, Scotland near sunset in the autumn.
In the late 1980s I was documenting the nesting cycles of some European bird species. An adult Eurasian Blue Tit feeding young in a nestbox, Cheshire, England.
In the early 1990s I was living in Cheshire, England. I spent some time positioning a portable hide (blind) to allow me to sit within a couple of yards of a Common Kingfisher.
In the late 1990s I was living in Saskatchewan, Canada. In the autumn parts of Saskatchewan are a major stopover for some species of birds heading south for the winter. Huge numbers of Snow Geese and Sandhill Cranes gather together in various locations. Snow Geese taking flight at Last Mountain Lake National Wildlife Area, Saskatchewan.
Winters in Saskatchewan can be very cold but also very spectacular. A frozen section of marsh at sunset, Little Quill Lake, Saskatchewan at -40°.
This week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge is For The Love Of..….
After rejecting the first couple of ideas for the challenge I thought about some of the various situations I have been in photographing birds.
A young male Rose-breasted Grosbeak in the rain in Ontario, Canada. The camera and lens was covered to keep the rain off but the photographer wasn’t.
A male Common Kingfisher photographed from a small, cramped and hot canvas hide (blind) in Cheshire, England.
A Bohemian Waxwing photographed at -30°C in Saskatchewan, Canada.
An American White Pelican with a large fish in its pouch. Photographed while sitting in the water to keep cool on a hot and very humid day in Saskatchewan, Canada.
A female Common Merganser with a youngster on her back. Taken in Ontario, Canada while being swarmed and bitten by hundreds of mosquitoes.
A male White-breasted Nuthatch photographed in Saskatchewan, Canada. Another -30°C day with some light snow falling this time.
A portrait of a female Wilson’s Phalarope taken while lying in sand mixed with wildfowl poop on the shoreline of a section of Little Quill Lake, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Or giving the photographer a look of disdain?
The new Weekly Prompts Photo Challenge is Up.
The attitude of this male Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) makes me think it’s a look of disdain for the photographer sitting in the portable canvas hide a few feet away.
Normally they’re looking down, watching for a fish in the water or an insect on the ground. It’s possible the bird was watching something in the air that could be a potential meal or a threat.
Throwback Thursday travels back to Cheshire, England in the early 1990s. Having posted a photo of a North American Belted Kingfisher for Wordless Wednesday I thought I would follow up with another Kingfisher species on a different continent.
This is a male Common Kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) that is found across parts of Eurasia and North Africa. Other common English names are Eurasian Kingfisher and River Kingfisher. The background is an out of focus hay meadow. I had a portable hide (blind) set up next to a pond in the meadow.