Blue-breasted Kingfishers

The Blue-breasted Kingfishers, Halcyon malimbica, is a tree kingfisher that is widely distributed in tropical West Africa. This kingfisher is essentially resident, but retreats from drier savanna areas to wetter habitats in the dry season.

Blue-breasted Kingfisher is a species of a variety of well-wooded habitats.


This is a large kingfisher, 25 cm in length. The adult has a bright blue head, back, wing panel, and tail. Its underparts are white, but it has a blue breast band. The shoulders are black. The flight of the Blue-breasted Kingfisher is rapid and direct. The large bill has a red upper mandible and a black lower mandible. The legs are bright red.

Males and females look alike, but juveniles are duller than adults.

Blue-breasted Kingfishers is a species of a variety of well-wooded habitats. It perches quietly in deep shade whilst seeking food. It is territorial but wary.

Blue-breasted Kingfisher

Call / Vocalization

The call of this noisy kingfisher is a whistled pu-pu-pu-pu-ku-ku-ku-ku.

Diet / Feeding

This species mainly hunts large insects, arthropods, fish, and frogs, but will also eat the fruit of the Oil Palm.

Breeding / Nesting

Blue-breasted Kingfisher has a striking display in which the wings are spread to show the white linings. The nest is a hole in a tree termite nest. A single clutch of two round white eggs is typical.

Blue-breasted Kingfisher, Halcyon malimbica
Blue-breasted Kingfisher, Halcyon malimbica
Blue-breasted Kingfisher
Photo of author

Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

We love to hear from our readers. If you have any questions or if you want to get in touch with us, you can find our contact details on our About Us page.

Leave a Comment