Chattering Kingfishers

The Chattering Kingfisher (Todiramphus tutus) is a species of bird in the kingfisher family Alcedinidae.

Distribution / Range

The species is found in the Cook Islands and the Society Islands in French Polynesia. The species is probably closely related to the white-bellied Collared Kingfishers of Fiji, Tonga and Samoa.

Its natural habitats are tropical moist lowland forests and tropical moist montane forest. The species prefers primary forest in montane vallyes, but will move into secondary growth and old plantations.

The species has an uneven distribution and is rare in some locations; a survey of the island of Tahiti found none between 1986-1991, although it had been reported on the island in the past. Nevertheless it is not considered threatened with extinction by the IUCN.

Description

It resembles the Collared Kingfisher but is smaller and lacks any rust colour in the plumage. The breast and throat is white, and the back, wings and crown are blue-green (although the crown of the Atiu subspecies is almost entirely white). It can be told from the Tahiti Kingfisher by the complete white collar.

The Chattering Kingfisher lives singly or in pairs.

Diet / Feeding

It feeds on insects and lizards taken on the wing or from the ground.

Nesting / Breeding

The species nests in tree cavities.

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