Alan McFadyen, who has been an avid wildlife photographer since 2009, just captured a photo that he has spent 6 years trying to get. By his count, it took him 4,200 hours and 720,000 photos to get a perfect shot of a kingfisher diving straight into the water without a single splash.


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“The photo I was going for of the perfect dive, flawlessly straight, with no splash required not only me to be in the right place and get a very lucky shot but also for the bird itself to get it perfect,” McFadyen told The Herald Scotland. “I would often go and take 600 pictures in a session and not a single one of them be any good. But now I look back on the thousands and thousands of photos I have taken to get this one image, it makes me realise just how much work I have done to get it.”

McFadyen, who also runs a wildlife photography hide business, was inspired to love nature and wildlife by his grandfather. “I remember my grandfather taking me to see the kingfisher nest and I just remember being completely blown away by how magnificent the birds are. So when I took up photography I returned to this same spot to photograph the kingfishers.”

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It took Alan McFadyen 6 years, 4,200 hours and 720,000 photos to get this shot:

“The photo I was going for of the perfect dive, flawlessly straight, with no splash required not only me to be in the right place and get a very lucky shot but also for the bird itself to get it perfect”

“I would often go and take 600 pictures in a session and not a single one of them be any good”

“I never really stopped to think about how long it was taking along the way as I enjoyed doing it but now I look back on it I’m really proud of the picture and the work I put in”

“I remember my grandfather taking me to see the kingfisher nest and I just remember being completely blown away by how magnificent the birds are”

“I’m sure my grandfather would have loved it, I just wish he could have seen it. All of my family contacted me when they saw it and said he would have been so proud of it”