Summer Kingfisher on branches
Widely distributed over Europe, Asia, and North Africa . Migrates from areas where rivers freeze in winter.
Kingfisher are small bright blue and orange birds of slow moving or still water.
Feeding by flying rapidly, low over water. Hunting for fish from riverside perches, hovering above the water’s surface.
Important members of ecosystems and good indicators of freshwater community health.
Common kingfishers are highly territorial, and must eat around 60% of its body weight each day. so it is essential to have control of a suitable stretch of river.
Solitary for most of the year, roosting alone in heavy cover.
Courtship is initiated by the male chasing the female while calling continually, and later by ritual feeding, with copulation usually following.
Nests are excavated by both birds of the pair in a low vertical riverbank.
kingfisher typically lays two to ten glossy white eggs
Both sexes incubate by day, but only the female at night.
The eggs hatch in 19–20 days, and the altricial young are in the nest for a further 24–25 days, often more.
When Juveniles are large enough, the young birds will come to the burrow entrance to be fed.
The early days for fledged juveniles are more hazardous. During its first dives into water, about four days after leaving the nest, a fledgling may become waterlogged and drown.
Very vulnerable to hard winters and habitat degradation through pollution or unsympathetic management of watercourses. Kingfishers are amber listed because of their unfavourable conservation status in Europe.
Listed as a Schedule 1 species under the Wildlife and Countryside Act offering them additional protection.