Kingfishers

Alcedinidae

Both the Azure and Little Kingfishers feed on small fish, insects and crustaceans. They are both found in well-vegetated riverine areas, swamps and mangroves. The Azure Kingfisher Ceyx azureus is found in Australia’s north and east (mainland) and in Tasmania, while the Little Kingfisher Ceyx pusillus is confined to the north and north-east. Of the remaining eleven species that have been recorded in Australia, two are endemic, the Red-backed Kingfisher Todiramphus pyrrhopygius and Laughing Kookaburra Dacelo novaeguineae, while six are shared with New Guinea and sometimes other Pacific islands, namely the Yellow-billed Kingfisher Syma torotoro, Forest Kingfisher T. macleayii, Collared Kingfisher T. chloris, Sacred Kingfisher T. sanctus, Buff-breasted Paradise-Kingfisher Tanysiptera sylvia and Blue-winged Kookaburra Dacelo leachii . A further three species are recorded only as vagrants.

Forest Kingfisher

Forest Kingfisher

What does it look like?  The Forest Kingfisher is easily identified by its deep, royal blue head and upper-parts and striking white underparts. Male birds have a broad white collar. Birds in eastern Australia are more turquoise and have a smaller white wing spot. A harsh repetitive ‘t’ reek t’ reek’ can be heard throughout the breeding season. August to December. Where does it live?  This species o...
Laughing Kookaburra

Laughing Kookaburra

What does it look like?  Instantly recognisable in both plumage and voice.  The chuckling "koo-koo-koo-koo-koo-kaa-kaa-kaa" is a familiar sound throughout its range. It also has a shorter “koooaa”.   The chuckling call is a prominent and raucous part of the dawn chorus.  In outback areas this early morning wake-up call gave the bird the nicknames of Bushman’s Clock, Alarm Bird and Breakfast Bird. W...