Beulah, Peel me a Grape

Kingfisher (202 of 7)The sunlight was at the perfect color this morning as the Belted Kingfisher was making her rounds trying to snag a fish for breakfast. When I arrived at my shooting location in Viera there were several other photographers already focused on the Kingfishers perch. As greetings were past around we bantered about gear, dreams of new gear, recent shoots,  image conquests which were achieved and of many missed opportunities. As with any morning outside of an office this Saturday morning reminded us that life was good.

Now as birds go Kingfishers are considered by many photographers to be a nemesis bird. Quick fliers, they are a constant tease as they lure us into a shooting position only to fly away just as the shutter is ready to be pressed, laughing at you with their incessant chatter as they do so. They do not sit still for very long, as they are always on the hunt looking for the catch of the day as it were, constantly diving head long into the murky water hoping for a delicious fish that makes up most of their diet. Indeed, they are fun to watch and more fun to capture on “film”.

I setup my camera near the other “photogs” and prefocused on the landing perch that was determined to be the perfect spot. Back and forth, up and down she went relentless in her pursuit of breakfast. When she did manage to grab a small fish she flew away from the little paparazzi gathering to the safety of the furthermost tree. Yup, for her, life was great but that was about to change.

Kingfisher (207 of 7)Apparently a Mockingbird decided that our little heroine was having too much fun. It buzzed the perch relentlessly causing the Kingfisher to be on the defensive. Right, Left, up, down the nagging persisted until the mockingbird decided it was bored with this game and moved on. Frazzled and ruffled our Kingfisher collected herself and went back to hunting. She eyed a new target and what looked like a perfect catch turned into a game of tag that didn’t go well for the pint-sized fisher…um..bird. After what seemed like an eternity in bird time (do birds actually sense time?) she finally caught a huge fish that could serve as breakfast, lunch and dinner! It seemed to be bigger than her entire head! She went on to tenderize her catch, much to the delight of our band of photographers. Kingfisher (201 of 7)She banged it on a tree limb, flipped it in the air and smashed it with her long beak all in an attempt to get it ready for consumption finally gulping it down in one bite! Shutters clicked off in rapid fire as she settled down to enjoy her conquest.

The Gospel of Matthew Chapter 6 states…Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? It is amazing that my Loving God uses all things to remind me to trust in Him. He promises to provide for all my needs but He doesn’t promise that it will always be easy and unlike the Mae West Line in the 1930 Movie, I’m No Angel in which she proclaimed, “Beulah, Peel me a Grape”, life is going to have its share of struggles. We can learn from this resilient little Kingfisher, who persevered in adversity, that our Heavenly Father has our back.

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