The Kings new clothes

"Haven't the Kingfishers for a while" ...said a passer by yesterday.

The one who catches flat fish and prawns opposite Railway Land after Xmas and the youngsters on the old wharf opposite Tescos last Summer, are all moulting, changing their old feathers for even brighter, more colourful ones. It's the mating season and one has to look one's best. They also have to find and perhaps dig out a new nest hole. They lay their eggs down inside a tunnel in a bank, high enough up to avoid a flood and the largest spring tides and hidden enough so as to avoid egg thieves such as mink. Here in and about Lewes that is a hard place to find. I know of one upstream a few miles and one down near Newhaven harbour. So, that's just 4 birds in about 8 miles of river, and while they are shedding and growing new 'clothes' they are rather reluctant to parade up and down the promenade!

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