SPITTING KINGFISHER/Advice on Mag.letters page to accept this observation?
On the 30th of June 2008 I had a Kingfisher in my 'scope,diving from a low twig,across the channel on Brentford Ait Island,for half an hour - periodically it spat a white liquid into the water below,looking intently,apparently baiting water to attract small fish.
Photographs showing Kingfishers with wide open beaks & a white pellet in the back of their throats,would be impossible if the spitting were fast enough to be mistaken for a liquid,& I don't think the beak opened.pellets of bone wouldn't be so frequent.
I'ts hunting ended when a crow began chasing it up & down the channel between that twig & an upturned dinghy that it had been diving from earlier.
The RSPB showed an interrest & said that bird might have learnt that behaviour
Glowworm,Thames,Kew Bridge. Comments welcome.