Sunday, 20 October 2013

Marvellous Malachite Kingfisher

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush, never more true than for some of our beauties, where you get to see a whole new side to their personality. The Malachite Kingfisher (Alcedo cristata) is a winged sapphire; easily a highlight on any birding day out. What is little seen though, is the crest that they have - which is put on full display to distract potential predators. We netted this beauty while aiming for Cape Canary at a drinking spot. The bird was released unringed as aquatic birds need special rings that can withstand constant dunking.


  1. Oh the magnificence
    the colors of bill and crest
    I can only sigh

  2. the malachite sunbird also has a crest? Or am I confusing birds. I know I once saw a malachite crest in our garden.

    1. Hi Di. Malachite Sunbirds don't have crests in the same way as the kingfisher, but they can puff up the feathers of the head when they are being aggressive towards eachother (as can quite a few bird species). Hope that helps!


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