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Posts Tagged ‘mud bank’

It is a beautiful day; the rain fizzled out and we are stuck with just 0.25 inch of the 2.0 + forecast. I noticed that a pair of Belted Kingfishers was beginning to nest at the Little Buffalo Crossing down the hill. They make lots of continuous racket and are fun to watch as they rattle around. Photo taken with a 7D and a 300 mm f/2.8 lens. They have chosen a high mud bank about 10′ above the river; hope it’s high enough to protect from spring floods. The bird was in a willow tree next to the river for this photo.

  • Size & Shape

    Belted Kingfishers are stocky, large-headed birds with a shaggy crest on the top and back of the head and a straight, thick, pointed bill. Their legs are short and their tails are medium length and square-tipped.

  • Color Pattern

    These kingfishers are powder blue above with fine, white spotting on the wings and tail. The underparts are white with a broad, blue breast band. Females also have a broad rusty band on their bellies. Juveniles show irregular rusty spotting in the breast band.

  • Behavior

    Belted Kingfishers spend much of their time perched alone along the edges of streams, lakes, and estuaries, searching for small fish. They also fly quickly up and down rivers and shorelines giving loud rattling calls. They hunt either by plunging directly from a perch, or by hovering over the water, bill downward, before diving after a fish they’ve spotted.

  • Habitat

    Kingfishers live near streams, rivers, ponds, lakes, and estuaries. They nest in burrows that they dig into soft earthen banks, usually adjacent to or directly over water. Kingfishers spend winters in areas where the water doesn’t freeze so that they have continual access to their aquatic foods.

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