AN AMATEUR photographer has captured a stunning photograph of a kingfisher about to plunge into he water “for his lunch”.
The incredible snap was taken at Barons Haugh Nature Reserve in Motherwell, North Lanarkshire by Derek McSwan, who has waited “years” to get his “dream shot”.
The 55-year-old travel agency owner was out bird watching on Saturday, when he managed to capture the majestic kingfisher as it was about to hit the water.
The once-in-a-lifetime image shows the brightly coloured bird seconds away from impact.
Its glossy, blue wings are outstretched as it plunges towards the icy waters below.
The light perfectly illuminates the bird’s striking plumage as it dives in.
It’s long been a dream of Derek’s to capture such a “perfect” shot.
Speaking today, the dad-of-three said: “It’s a vision I’ve had for a number of years to get a kingfisher diving as I imagined it in my head just before it hits the water with both wings spread out.
“They are almost impossible to catch in flight as they are so fast.
“It was a cold and dull day with very few brighter moments.
“I wasn’t really expecting much until I heard the distinctive call of the bird as it flew past and hovered around and then stopped and sat on the reeds within my view.
“Just as it was sitting there patiently waiting for its next catch, a shaft of light shined upon him and at that precise moment I got myself ready for the shot.
“I knew at some point it was going to dive for food.
“Fifteen minutes passed looking through the camera with the focus locked on and still no movement from the bird.
“My hands were getting cold and numb with a finger poised and ready on the shutter button that whole time.
“Just as I was thinking about heating my hands up, the kingfisher dived into the water and I got my dream shot that I’ve pictured for years.
“It’s probably a picture I’ll never get again with both the wings spread out in perfect dive formation.
“I immediately checked the camera to make sure I got it and to my delight I did.
“I couldn’t wait to get home and check it out on the computer.
“As you can see from the image it turned out perfectly.”
A thrilled Derek then decided to share his snap on Facebook on Mon where it has also blown away social media users.
Soria Franchitti wrote: “Wow, the colours are amazing, great shot.”
Laurie Graham added: “Amazing, this is beautiful.”
And Jenine Kinder said: “Absolutely stunning.”