Juvenile Stork-billed Kingfisher

Somewhere in the middle of this tiny island lies a pond. A byproduct of a granite quarry long abandoned. Beside it, the highest peak in the entire island, with a name belying its past potential.

I was there for the hill hiking and hopefully some wildlife photography along the way. The pond was besides the point. But at the end of the hike I had nothing to show for my effort. So it was natural that I made my way to the pond, hoping for some change of luck.

The view was good, the water was calm. In the half and hour there, there were numerous birds passing by. Dollarbirds and bee-eaters were swooping through the water looking for food. Bulbuls were flying around. An eagle was soaring above. Quite a sight.

But the light wasn’t favourable and my photographic skill somewhat lacking, so the photos were mediocre at best.

Luckily for me, all was not lost. Calling loudly and incessantly at one side of the bush besides the pond was a juvenile Stork-billed Kingfisher. It was quite far away and tree branches obscured its view. But I managed to capture a few photos nonetheless. Technically imperfect, but it was a rare sighting and it’s a cute bird.

Juvenile Stork-billed Kingfisher

And below is the parent which I caught the next day (I just had to return to confirm their presence!). Notice the difference in the colour of the blue plumage and of the tip of the bill .

Stork-billed Kingfisher flying sequence

Stork-billed Kingfishers as the largest resident kingfishers in Singapore.  They are not very common, but can be found where there is a large body of water. And they are solitary birds, but this pond is home to a family!

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