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Belted Kingfisher2023-04-13T09:19:47-05:00

Belted Kingfisher

The Belted Kingfisher has a large head with a shaggy crest and a long, heavy black bill with a grey base.  It has a wild rattling call when flying over ponds or the bay.  It watches for fish while perched on a wire or branch then feeds by diving headfirst into the water.  It winters on Galveston Island then heads north for breeding season.

Kristine Rivers puts it this way:

“This is one of the few species in which the female is more colorful than the male, with a rusty band extending across the belly and under the wings. Look for them perched on power lines near the John M. O’Quinn I-45 Estuarial Corridor.”

Both sexes have a slate blue head, large white collar, a large blue band on the breast, and white underparts. The back and wings are slate blue with black feather tips with little white dots. The female features a rufous band across the upper belly that extends down the flanks.

Galveston County

“Kingfisher with Breakfast” won Honorable Mention in the 2023 Week 4 FeatherFest Photo Contest.

Featured in Kristine Rivers’ Top 5 Early Birds blog.


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