Wednesday, 28 October 2015

Wild Bird Wednesday 170 - Laughing Kookaburra

The Laughing Kookaburra is a bit of an Australian icon.  Its call - so well described in its name - is often the herald of both ends of the day.  It comes as a surprise to some people find out that the Laughing Kookaburra is in fact a kingfisher.  There is a second species, the Blue Winged Kookaburra, further north in Australia, but it does not occur on my local patch.

Another thing that many people find surprising is that the Laughing Kookaburra is in fact an introduced species in some parts of Australia.  It did not naturally occur in either Tasmanian or Western Australia, and is only found there because of human intervention.




These pictures were all taken at Tidal River, at Wilsons Prom National Park. This rather fine fellow was hunting for (I think) worms that were coming out of the grass after a night of heavy rain.  While he (or she) was happy to sit on the post while I was watching, he would only swoop down to collect food after I had retreated a bit - as a result the pictures are not much chop!

I'm in the middle of a busy week, so will cease my rambling here.  Click on the familiar blue button to join in with WBW.  SM


35 comments:

Silver Parrot said...

What a cute bird! I've heard of kookaburras, but didn't realize they were kingfishers. His coloring reminds me of some of our local woodpeckers...if you stuck a kingfisher beak on one of them. Very cool bird!

eileeninmd said...

Hello Stewart, the Kookaburra would be high on my list of birds to see if I ever visited your country. Great photos! Thanks for hosting, have a happy week!

Rajesh said...

Very lovely bird.

Author R. Mac Wheeler said...

what a handsome, heady looking fellow

NatureFootstep said...

lol, we have the same bird. But I think yours looks younger. :)

Thanks for hosting.

Sharon Wagner said...

They do look like a kingfisher. Thanks again for following my new blog. You'll have to let me know if you start a book!

EG CameraGirl said...

So it's a kind of kingfisher! How interesting!

Bas said...

geweldig mooi is hij je kan goed zien dat het familie van de ijsvogel is.

Sylvia K said...

What a beautiful bird and terrific captures for the day, Stewart!! Hope your week is going well! Enjoy!!

Rhodesia said...

Great photos, I remember the call when we were there, quite different to what you would expect. Enjoy your busy week. Diane

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
Having had six 'tame' Kookas during my quarter century down under, I do miss these darlings! Looking forward to hopefully seeing one or two in the upcoming visit... YAM xx

Linda W. said...

Great photos! What a cute bird! And I always think of that song, "kookaburra sits in the old gum tree..."

Jo said...

It certainly looks like a kingfisher with that awesome-looking bill and squat body. Great shots, Stewart. I'll link to your meme tomorrow (Wednesday). Thanks for hosting. Greetings Jo

Gunilla Bäck said...

Fabulous photos of this cute bird! Thanks for hosting.

HOOTIN ANNI said...

Love it. We saw one here in Texas just a couple of weeks ago at a Hawk Presentation....their call is often heard in movie sound backgrounds also.

DeniseinVA said...

He's a handsome one Stewart, fantastic shots of him too. I have only seen them in zoos here. Hope to see one in its own habitat one day.

TexWisGirl said...

he's wonderful. :)

Andrea Priebe said...

I'm not surprised he is a Kingfisher ... he looks like a Kingfisher. But, I think it would be a bit beneath the dignity of a Kingfisher to hunt worms ... right? Though, I suppose if you are hungry and the opportunity presents itself, one could hardly resist. I love all of the king fishers, they have a body that looks like it aught to be a stuffed toy, or a cartoon character ... and even their behavior makes me chuckle ... but a Kookaburra laughing has to be the piece de resistance :) I am feeling jealous of all your birds. I seem to have lost mine. They have all disappeared for some reason or maybe it is that I am too busy to look when they do come around. Anyway, I may have to dip into my archives if I don't find some soon
:( Hope you are enjoying your spring weather and soon you will have many baby birds to photograph ... wishful thoughts :) Stay well, Stewart ...

Andrea @ From The Sol

Frank said...

Super shots Stewart.

Brian King said...

Love these guys! Very handsome!

Beth said...

Patting myself on the back as when looking at the photos before reading your post I thought to mysekf that the bird looked like a member of the Kingfisher family! What a delight!

diane b said...

My all time favourite bird even if they do steal your food at a picnic.

Marilyn Kircus said...

That call is definitely iconic. Last spring, I attended the Feather Festival in Galveston. One group of people had several birds to display. One of them was the Kookaburra. It was a female and had bonded with one of the guys. So he could make the call and set it off and it would go on for several minutes at a time. It was the hit of the festival. But I was really surprised that a kingfisher would eat worms. Kind of like our (at least since they first came here in a Hurricane in the 1940's) cattle egrets eating birds and ticks.

Marilyn Kircus said...

Sorry. Cattle egrets eat grasshoppers and ticks. Sometimes you see them following mowers to get the feast.

Breathtaking said...

Hello Stewart!:) Wonderful portraits of this adorable fellow, which looks like a young Kookaburra.Would love to see one in the wild.

photodoug said...

Stewart, a stunning bird. Thanks for sharing.

Missy George said...

I have always liked the Kookaburra...such a cute little bird..Fun pictures..Enjoy your busy week Stewart..

Andy Wilson said...

Gotta' love the Kookaburra birds.

pattisjarrett said...

Cute little bird. Nice of it to pose for you. :)

Margaret Adamson said...

Great close ups of the Kookaburra. Thanks for hosting adn have a lovely weekend

ladyfi said...

Oh squeal! How adorable.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

My favorite bird I've never seen! Thank you so much -- both for posting and hosting and for your comments.

Pat Tillett said...

Gorgeous photos Stewart!

Lee said...

Beautiful birds, the kookas...I live them. I have a family of them here who keep a close eye on me daily! :)

Fred Gill said...

very nice post thanks for sharing it.
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