• Mating: Seasonally monogamous
• Peak Breeding Activity: April-June
• Incubation: 22-24 days
• Clutch Size: 6-8 eggs
• Young Fledge: 28 days after hatching
• Typical Foods: various types of fish, especially brown trout, bluntnose minnows, and bluegill
The belted kingfisher is blue-gray above, with a ragged bushy crest and a broad, blue-gray breast-band. The female has an additional rusty breast-band. The head and bill are noticeably large compared to their bodies.
Habitat and Habits
The kingfisher inhabits open water with fish; streams, rivers, ponds and lakes, etc. Most of the year, kingfishers are loners, vigorously defending their hunting territories against other kingfishers and protesting the presence of any other perceived invaders. This is why they give a loud, raucous rattle when they are flushed along a stream or pond. Often, after catching a fish, through spectacular dives, sometimes from considerable heights, the kingfisher returns to a perch and dispatches its victim by beating it against a branch. This species is hardy and can be found in winter wherever open water occurs.
Reproduction and Care of the Young
After mating, the pair digs a long tunnel into a wall of clay or sand with a nesting cavity at the end of it. The nest is usually built near their fishing territory.