Whiterumped kingfisher

Caridonax fulgidus

SUBFAMILY

Halcyoninae

TAXONOMY

Halcyon fuligidus Gould, 1857, Lombok. Two subspecies. Looks superficially like a Halcyon species, but shows more similarity to paradise kingfishers, kookaburras, and Actenoides species.

OTHER COMMON NAMES

English: Blue-and-white kingfisher, glittering kingfisher; French: Martin-chasseur étincelant; German: Glitzerliest; Spanish: Alción Culiblanco.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

12 in (30 cm), no mass data. Large kingfisher, blue-black above, white below and on rump, with bright red bill, feet and eye ring. Deep orange iris distinctive.

DISTRIBUTION

Main islands of Lesser Sundas archipelago in Indonesia, Lom-bok, Sumbawa, Flores, and Besar.

HABITAT

Primary and secondary forests, including wooded areas with cultivation.

BEHAVIOR

Calls with long rapid series of yapping notes, one per second, sometimes for over half a minute. Cocks the tail when calling, like a kookaburra.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Known to eat insects and their larvae but no description of how they are captured.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Each pair is territorial and excavates a nest tunnel in an earth bank. One nest had two eggs, another a single chick.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened. Still considered widespread and fairly common, despite restricted range and alteration of favored habitats in primary evergreen and deciduous forests. Biology poorly known.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

None known, though attractive to bird-watching tourists with handsome colors and unique taxonomic status. ♦

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