I’ve walked the river three times since the snow, trying to take a seasonal photo of a kingfisher. Couldn’t find one, which would have made it a few days since the last sighting. That was worrying since they’ve been so easy to spot for most of this year. Murky water, bad weather….not good for kingfishers. In the end I gave up thinking of pictures and just prayed to see one, which was granted just before reaching the end of Cotterstock wood. It came from the side weir and crossed the river into the wood, taking the line of the brook which comes in from Glapthorn. It could be that they are finding the streams easier to fish than the river, and like most birds in bad weather they are keeping pretty quiet.
Lovely sound of a westerly in the willows on the way back. It has a certain tone and timbre to it – maybe the way the wind blows, or the way the tree grows on the sunnier side? There was a flock of twenty of so birds on a bare patch of grass way across the meadow. At first glance I took them to be fieldfares, but there was a lapwing’s mewing call as they took off in an untidy lolloping flap, half-circling to gain height against a darkening blue sky before twinkling off downwind towards the east.