The Amazon is one of the areas of the planet with the richest fauna in the world. Although not all species can always be researched and a lot of data can be obtained, there are some interesting things you know about. Like the Amazon Kingfisher, for example.
Exactly where do they live?
It is a species of coraciform bird of the family cerylidae, known by the scientific name chloroceryle amazona. A species that resides in the lowlands of the American tropics.
It is distributed from southern Mexico, through Central America, to northern and central Argentina. No subspecies have been recognized.
Quite a large specimen
It may be one of the largest of the kingfishers, measuring between 29 – 30 cm, with a total weight of 110 grams. In appearance, it looks like a typical fish martin, with a short tail and a long beak.
It is characterized by the olive green color on the top, the head and with a crest. This could lead to confusion with the green kingfisher. But it lacks the white spots on its wings that it does possess.
It presents a slight sexual dimorphism. The male has a white underside, with a reddish-brown, wide-banded breast, along with some quellar green stripes. Females, on the other hand, have the lower part in white, with green patches on each side of their breasts and the cheek stripes in green.
When the youngest specimens are born, they look more like females than males. But they have white spots on their wings, which females lack.
Anything to tell about their lifestyle?
It is not a species that usually has problems in contact with humans, although it is quite frightening. It does not usually travel several distances and although the green kingfisher is sympathetic to its geographical distribution, they have no contact with it.
When it is time to reproduce, it does so in ravines of streams or rivers. The nest consists of a horizontal tunnel, built on a river bank, 1.6 metres deep and 10 centimetres in diameter. Both male and female are responsible for the construction of this nest, which ends with a huge chamber.
The female will lay three to four eggs. Although rare, several females may share the nest and one may incubate the other’s eggs. The incubation time is 21 to 25 days, depending on the amount of eggs.
While the female incubates, the male’s task is to monitor the nest to prevent possible predators from entering. After hatching, the chicks remain in the nest until they are two months old, when they have learned to fly.
Their diet consists of fish, with crustaceans and small aquatic insects as a complement. The survival rate of the chicks is not very high, as many drown while learning to fish.