Sunday, June 15, 2008

Bird on a Wire !

The white-throated kingfisher (scientific name: Halcyon smyrnensis, also known as the white-breasted kingfisher) is found in many European and Asian countries like Bulgaria, Turkey, India, Philippines, Israel, Egypt, Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, China, Taiwan, Indonesia, etc. The population of birds found from Burma to the Greater Sundas are now lumped into fusca subspecies (the photo here shows a pair of fusca).

White-throated Kingfisher is a common species of a variety of habitats, mostly open country in the plains, but has been seen at 7500 ft in the Himalayas with trees, wires or other perches.

The White-throated Kingfisher breeds at the onset of Monsoons. In its courtship display the male perches near the female and spreads out the wings with bill raised high and displaying the white throat and front. Its nest is usually a tunnel (50 cm long or more) in an earth bank. Nest tunnels in a haystack have also been recorded. The eggs take 20 to 22 days to hatch and the chicks fledge in 19 days.

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