This morning as I was walking briskly through the woods near Farnbrough North station I again saw a kingfisher. It flew low over one of the lakes and then, with wings outstretched, landed in the lower branches of a birch tree on a wooded island.
Zoe has now seen a kingfisher for herself. On two occasions while we were walking past the middle lake in the Reading University grounds she has seen one fly into the bushes on the eastern bank. However, on neither occasion, was I quick enough to see it for myself.
Getting back to the woods near Farnbrough North, a couple of mammal stories:
A week or so ago I was walking along the path when I heard a splash from the river. I looked round and noticed a branch on a overhanging tree shaking. Then I saw an animal swimming rapidly to the bank. A rather bedraggled squirrel pulled itself up onto the bank and than scrambled back up the tree, out of which it must have just fallen.
This afternoon as I was hurrying through the woods to catch the 1pm train, I became aware of a deer watching me from about 20 metres into the wood. Previously when I have seen deer in those woods (about once per year) they have run off as fast as they could. This one it just stood and stared at me, so I stopped and stared back. After about 30 seconds, I realized that it must be waiting for me to walk on so it could get to the riverbank to drink. I have previously seen a deer crossing the path at that point, and the riverbank is the only place it could have been going to. Having worked that out, I hurried on to catch my train.