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Alcedo atthis

Alcedo atthis
Photo Information
Copyright: Filipe Caetano (Filipe_Caetano) Silver Note Writer [C: 5 W: 0 N: 79] (368)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-02-03
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D70, Sigma 150mm F2.8 APO Macro DG HSM + 1.4X
Exposure: f/8, 1/200 seconds
Details: Tripod: Yes
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2009-05-25 14:13
Viewed: 11427
Points: 24
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Phylum: Chordata

Class: Aves

Order: Coraciiformes

Family: Alcedinidae

Genus: Alcedo

Species: A. atthis

Binomial name
Alcedo atthis
The European Kingfisher or Common Kingfisher, Alcedo atthis, is widely distributed in Europe, Africa, and Asia. It is resident except in northern areas where the rivers freeze. It will then move to milder regions. In most of its European range it is the only kingfisher.

The general colour of the upper parts of the adult bird is bright metallic blue, cobalt on the back, and showing greenish reflections on the head and wings. The ear coverts and under parts are warm chestnut, the chin and sides of neck white.

The bill is blackish and reddish orange at the base; the legs are bright red with a dark blue stripe. In the young the bill is black. Length averages 19 cm (7.5 inches) and wings average 7.5 cm (2.95 inches).

The flight of the Kingfisher is rapid, the short rounded wings whirring until they appear a mere blur. It usually flies near the water, but during courtship the male chases the female through and over the trees with loud shrill whistles.

From February onwards the male has a trilling song, a modulated repetition of many whistles. He also signals with a whistle to the female when he is feeding her, this being his share of the nesting duties. This whistle is produced even when his bill is loaded with food, yet is clear and distinct. The female will reply and emerge from the nesting hole, and may fly to meet him, take the fish from him in the air, and return to the nest.

The bird has regular perches or stands from which it fishes. These may be a few inches or many feet above the water. It sits upright, its tail pointed downwards. It drops suddenly with a splash and usually returns at once with a struggling captive.

Large fish are beaten on a bough or rail; small fish and insects are promptly swallowed. A fish is usually lifted and carried by its middle, but its position is changed, sometimes by tossing it into the air, before it is swallowed head downwards.

The Kingfisher sometimes hovers over the water, with body held almost vertical, the tail and head bent slightly forward and the bill inclined downward.

It is a bird of the waterside, since it feeds entirely upon aquatic animals. It is frequent beside lakes, ponds, canals or dykes and streams.

In winter, especially when inland waters are icebound, it may move to tidal marshes and the shore, taking its stand on the mussel or limpet covered rocks and diving into the shallow pools.

Fish, aquatic insects and crustaceans are eaten. It eats numerous freshwater shrimps Gammarus.

flashpoint, ramthakur, nasokoun, Juyona, nglen, SelenE, phlr has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • luibu Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 13 W: 0 N: 54] (508)
  • [2009-05-25 14:36]

hola Filipe.
Bellissima foto grande momento catturato , ciao Luigino

Filipe merhaba,neredeyse kendisi kadar büyük bir balık yakalamış.Harika bir an karesi,netlik müthiş,ellerine sağlık :)

Brilliant shot, love the color and detail, you were prepared for this shot, well done indeed!


Now a picture like this shows why it is called a 'Kingfisher', Filipe!
The fish is so big the bird seems to be holding it in its beak with great effort.
The image is very sharp with perfect details and colours.
Thanks for sharing this wonderful image and all the best.

Super sharp image, lovely colours, perfect details of a KINGFISHER.


hello Filipe
splendid moment,technically even scene,perfect photo

  • Great 
  • Juyona Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor [C: 2232 W: 10 N: 2971] (16891)
  • [2009-05-25 23:32]

Hola amigo,
preciosa captura,
vívidos colores y estupendo enfoque...
saludos Filipe

Wonderfull. A difficult shot but you did maked perfect.

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2009-05-26 1:49]

Beautiful closeup with feed, kingfisher is pretty good to look at. tfs.

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2009-05-26 10:37]

Hi Filipe,
Superb photo of this Kingfisher with prey. The fish is a bit too big, but you never know...
Excellent sharp details and wonderful clear colours. what a beautiful BG!!! Perfect timing and POV. Great composition.

  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2009-05-26 12:59]

Hi Filipe . As i been have lucky with taking some kingfishers this year i was so imprested with yours . You have taken this with fine detail and sharp focusing. With such natural colours. and he fish as a bonus. A nice POV/DOF. well done .TFS.

  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2009-05-26 14:31]

Ola Filipe,
Very nice catch for both of you.

  • Great 
  • cako Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 485 W: 0 N: 772] (3395)
  • [2009-06-18 12:07]

Hi Filipe
exeelent composition and sharp

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