Green Kingfisher is a small kingfisher of the tropical Americas, with a
range that just extends in the U.S. in Texas and southern Arizona and New
Mexico. They are often overlooked in areas where they are found, as
they prefer to perch in thick vegetation along stream and river banks.
Both the male and female share similar green plumage on the head and
upperparts, but the male has a rusty-colored breast, while the female has
green and white on the breast.
Habitat: Found near water, typically along streams
and rivers, and typically where there is dense vegetative growth along the
Diet: Feeds mostly on small fish, but will also
take insects on occasion.
Behavior: Green Kingfishers hunt by observing from
a low perch, typically thick vegetation or a branch overhanging the water,
and then plunging into the water when a small fish is spotted.
Nesting: The nest is a burrow built into the side
of a river bank. Both the male and female help to excavate the nest
burrow, which is typically 2 to 3 feet long, and ends in a larger nesting
chamber. Both sexes help to incubate the eggs, and both parents help
to raise the young.
Song: The call of a Green Kingfisher is a staccato
chattering. Also has a short buzzy call that descends in pitch from
start to finish.
Migration: Considered a permanent resident
throughout their range. Vagrants have occasionally been found a bit
north of their typical range in the U.S.
Much smaller size and different plumage makes it easy to identify from other
kingfishers found in the U.S.
Conservation Status: There are currently no
perceived major threats to Green Kingfisher populations, and
IUCN cites it as a species of "Least Concern".
Image Information: Colored pencil drawing by Terry
Sohl - March 2012