The Red-backed Kingfisher
) is a species of kingfisher
in the Halcyonidae
family, also known as tree kingfishers
. It is a predominantly blue-green and white bird with a chestnut rump. It is found across the continent of Australia, mainly inhabiting the drier regions.
The Red-backed Kingfisher was first described by the ornithologist John Gould
in 1841. It was known for many years by its old scientific name of Halcyon pyrrhopygia
before being transferred to the genus Todiramphus
. Its specific epithet is derived from the Ancient Greek
/πυρρο- "flame-coloured" or "red" and pyge
Measuring 20–22.5 cm (9 in), the Red-backed Kingfisher has a streaked green and white crown, bluish-green wings and tail, and lower back, rump and upper tail coverts chestnut with white breast, abdomen and nape. It has a black band stretching from the bill, through the eyes and to the ear coverts. The female is duller overall in coloration. The iris is dark brown and the legs and feet dark grey. Immature birds have speckling on their breasts. The call is a descending whistle, with a harsh alarm call given by birds near the nest.
Distribution and habitat
The Red-backed Kingfisher is native to most of Australia
. It is a summer visitor to... Read More