Ceryle alcyon
(Belted Kingfisher)

Order: Coraciiformes
Order Description: Kingfishers
Family: Alcedinidae
Family Description: Kingfishers

Physical Description:
11-14 1/2" (28-36 cm). A large-headed bird with ragged, bushy crest and large, heavy, spear-shaped bill. Males are bluish-gray above and white below with broad gray-blue breast band. Female has a second rust-colored band on upper belly, below the bray-blue one.

Similar Species- Green Kingfisher

Call is a loud, harsh, dry, staccato rattle, often prolonged.

Breeds from western and central Alaska, east across portions of Canada to Labrador, and south to southern California, southern Texas, Gulf Coast, and southern Florida. Winters in south-coastal and southeastern Alaska, British Columbia, Colorado, southern Great Lakes region, and New England, and south to northern South America (rare).

Found primarily along water (both freshwater and marine), including lakes, wooded creeks and rivers, seacoasts, bays, and estuaries.

Eats mainly fishes, but will also eat various other vertebrates and invertebrates.

Solitary except during breeding period. Usually nests in burrow constructed in bank near water. In some areas, availability of foraging sites may be more limiting than availability of nest sites. Obtains food by diving into water from air or perch.

Both sexes incubateClick word for definition 5- 8 eggs (usually 6-7), for 23-24 days. Young leave nest after 30-35 days.

Element Code: ABNXD01020
Status: Protected nongame species
Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S5,NTMB
National Rank: N5B,N5N

Important State References:
No references are available at this time.

Photo by George Jameson, ©2002
Design by Ean Harker©1999, 2000.
Written by Jason Karl, 2000.