Victory at last… Got it!

Belted Kingfishers on our wetland seem to have an agreement amongst  them… don’t get shot.

By a camera, that is. As I’ve never heard of anyone hunting for this high energy species. Getting a decent photo has taken a lot of perseverance, good timing, and probably a certain amount of luck, too.

10-23-15_b_belted_kingfisher_a

Celebrate my nature photography victory with me by claiming two interesting Belted Kingfisher trivia tidbits-

  • Belted Kingfishers nest in burrows dug in stream banks. Two of its toes are fused together and act as a shovel for digging their nesting burrows.
  • Belted Kingfisher nestlings have acidic stomaches that help them digest bones, fish scales, and arthropod shells. However, as fledglings their stomach chemistry changes, and they begin regurgitating pellets. The pellets accumulate on the ground around fishing and roosting perches. A lucky find if you want to dissect one to learn more about Kingfisher diet 😉

Science behind this post:

All About Birds

Bird Web


Weekly Photo Challenge: “Victory

28 comments

  1. Great picture! I see belted kingfishers here but usually just one or two days a year (on our farm, I don’t know how long they stay in the entire area). I did not know about the digging or the pellets, so thanks for sharing those cool facts!

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          1. 😀 I have tried to photograph each one I see…maybe I have seen four of them all in all…My daughter worked as a volunteer in New Zealand, and used to swim in a pool in the forest. ..together with kingfishers living in a hole by the shore. No photos…fast as rockets…

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    1. The Belted Kingfisher is in a family called water kingfishers and uses that big bill to score fish and other small aquatic animals from near the surface of the water. I’ve read that your kookaburra is also a kingfisher but is in a family called tree kingfishers. Pretty cool. Do you ever see any? There is a third family called river kingfishers…

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      1. Jane, there is no shortage of kookaburras around here, except a few weeks ago when I submitted daily sightings for a backyard bird sighting programme! We had to record a 20 minute window each day. As luck would have it, half our regular visitors were no shows that week! 😦

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        1. Gee, Ken- that must be a universal understanding for birds. To grow scarce during the annual bird counts, that is. I experienced a similar phenomena here during the last backyard bird count week. Maybe it’s all part of the Darwin plan… survival tactic. If the birds manipulate the statistics, perhaps humans will be tricked into doing a better jobs preserving wildlife habitat… ?

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            1. Sounds like a plan, Ken. If all goes according to plan, my husband and I hope to go to a presentation tomorrow night about the language of birds and how many of the species have very complex songs patterns. Then your idea will really have an even truer sense, in my mind. (Which can often be scattered… but that’s a whole other thing…)

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  2. I love this shot, but it’s so odd. I just visited an entry that also had a kingfisher photo and I just got a photo of one a couple of weeks ago (but didn’t use it for the challenge!) Before that, I don’t think I’d seen a photo of one in my almost-four years of blogging. 🙂

    janet

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    1. Apparently our species of kingfishers originated from Africa. This sniper is from Wikipedia-
      (Water kingfishers) are all specialist fish-eating species, unlike many representatives of the other two families (tree and river), and it is likely that they are all descended from fish-eating kingfishers which founded populations in the New World. It was believed that the entire group evolved in the Americas, but this seems not to be true. The original ancestor possibly evolved in Africa – at any rate in the Old World – and the Chloroceryle species are the youngest ones.

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