This thread is about Pied Kingfishers only. If you have any photos of or interesting information about Pied Kingfishers you can post it here. Maybe you have made an interesting observation while watching Pied Kingfishers in one of the SANParks that you want to share with the rest of us; this is the place to do it.
Please try and keep generalized comments to the minimum and only post here if it is information we can learn from (if not we might have to move your comments elsewhere). It’s always nice to post messages telling people how nice their photo looks like or how you appreciated the info but messages like this sometimes cause the real information to disappear into obscurity.
Now we are waiting for your photo contributions or additional information we can learn from.
Pied Kingfisher (Ceryle rudis)
Pied Kingfisher seen on the low water bridge to Balule
Alternate common name(s) as used in other areas:
Lesser Pied Kingfisher, Small Pied Kingfisher, Indian Pied Kingfisher
French: Martin-pêcheur pie, Alcyon pie
Dutch: Bonte Ijsvogel
This is a common, easily seen, black and white crested Kingfisher. that occurs throughout sub-Saharan Africa and southern Asia from Turkey to China . It is resident and most birds do not migrate other than seasonal movements. The Pied Kingfisher is estimated to be the world's third commonest kingfisher and is a noisy bird unmissable within its range.
It is mainly a specialist fish-eater although it will take crustaceans and large aquatic insects. It has evolved two unique strategies shared by no other kingfishers. As well as hunting from a perch it will seek fish by hovering prior to a dive like an Osprey. It is the largest bird that is capable of a true hover in still air and this hunting method means that, unlike the closely related Giant Kingfisher, it is not dependent on there being extensive woodland within its home range.
The sexes are very similar and are only distinguished by the presence of 2 full breast bands (one broad and one narrow) in the male whereas the female has a single incomplete breast band. They are usually found in pairs or small groups and they nest in burrows, often in small colonies. They lay 3-6 white egss. As with all kingfishers the nest of a Pied Kingfisher soon becomes unsanitary.