1. Home
  2. Fun Animal Facts
  3. Blue-Eared Kingfisher: 15 Facts You Won’t Believe!

Animals

Kidadl Team

AUGUST 06, 2021

Blue-Eared Kingfisher: 15 Facts You Won’t Believe!

Learn about this amazing bird and discover

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is a medium-sized bird from the Alcedinidae family. It is one of the most well-known species of bird in the world because of its beautiful and brightly colored body. The primary colors of the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) bird can be described as blue and orange-brown. This bird is native to the Indian subcontinent, as well as Southeast Asia. It is prominent in countries such as India, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Myanmar. The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) bird has five recognized subspecies spread across their Asian range and the world. It favors dense forests and inland wetlands. This bird prefers to perch close to rivers in the open habitats where it can hunt its prey of small fish and dragonfly larvae. The closest relative of the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) bird is the Blythe kingfisher, but it is often confused with the common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis), with only the blue ear and richer colors separating it from the common kingfisher. Blue-eared kingfishers show slight sexual dimorphism with females having red minor mandibles.

Keep reading to discover more about these fascinating birds. For more relatable content, check out these hummingbird facts and bee-eater facts for kids pages.

Blue-Eared Kingfisher Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a blue-eared kingfisher?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is a bird.

What class of animal does a blue-eared kingfisher belong to?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) belongs to the Aves class of animals

How many blue-eared kingfishers are there in the world?

The exact number of the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) species in the world is unknown.

Where does a blue-eared kingfisher live?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is found in the Indian subcontinent of Asia, as well as in Southeast Asia. Within the blue-eared kingfisher range map and world distribution, it favors dense forests, mangroves, and inland wetlands in the subtropical and tropical ranges

What is a blue-eared kingfisher's habitat?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is found under the cover of trees in a range of dense forests. It preys on fish in the water, so it perches near streams of rivers so that it can hunt on its preferred prey. The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is found to inhabit canals, other natural ecosystems, and even parks and gardens with bodies of water near them. In nature, they can also be found near estuaries of the sea, and creeks, from elevation ranging from sea level to 3281 ft (1000 m). It builds and excavates tunnels for nesting in the river banks it inhabits.

Who do blue-eared kingfishers live with?

Blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) birds live alone, save for the breeding season, when they get together with one of the opposite sex to mate and breed.

How long does a blue-eared kingfisher live?

A blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) may live close to four years.

How do they reproduce?

The adult blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) reproduces by breeding and laying eggs. The breeding season for the blue-eared kingfisher lasts from April-August in India. They excavate tunnels in river banks for nesting and the female lays five to seven white eggs in these nests. The juvenile blue-eared kingfisher is dispersed by the adult in a different territory.

What is their conservation status?

The conservation status of the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature is Least Concern.

Blue-Eared Kingfisher Fun Facts

What do blue-eared kingfishers look like?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is 5.9-6.7 in (15-17 cm) long and weighs around 0.5-0.9 oz (15-24 g). It has bright blue upperparts and breast, and rufous-orange underparts. Apart from the upper parts and breast, the face, nape, and head of the blue-eared kingfisher can be described as being ultramarine or a sapphire blue as well. The sides of the necks have a white blaze. And perhaps most prominently, they are aptly named for their dark blue ear coverts or stripes which separate them from the very similar-looking common kingfisher species who have rufous ear stripes. Apart from the rufous ears, the common kingfisher also has lighter blue upper parts. The throat and the chin of the blue-eared kingfisher are whitish. The blue-eared kingfishers show dimorphism in their bills. The male has a white-tipped dark bill, and the female has a reddish lower mandible. The female also has rufous underparts, the same as the male. The feet are red as well. The juvenile blue-eared kingfisher has one description feature similar to the common kingfisher, its rufous ear stripe ear-coverts. It also has light mottling on its throat.

The females of the blue-eared kingfisher species have a reddish lower mandible.

How cute are they?

The blue-eared Kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is one of the most beautiful and recognizable birds in the world. They are known for bright, ultramarine backs and wings, which are a favorite among bird-watchers. They are also one of the most photographed birds in the world. This blue kingfisher stands out in its habitat of green forests. Apart from the blue, their underparts are a stunning bright rufous-brown as well. The females are even more beautiful than the males, with their bills having a bright reddish lower mandible.

How do they communicate?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) communicates via calls that are high pitched and sound like 'trreee-tee'.

How big is a blue-eared kingfisher?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is 5.9-6.7 in (15-17 cm) long, which makes it almost two times smaller than the belted kingfisher.

How fast can a blue-eared kingfisher fly?

A blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) may fly up to speeds of 25 mph (40 kph). A diving blue-eared kingfisher may go even faster when it hunts by swooping down on prey in the water.

How much does a blue-eared kingfisher weigh?

A blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) weighs 0.53-0.85 oz (15-24 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

The males and females of the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) species are not known by specific names.

What would you call a baby blue-eared kingfisher?

A baby juvenile blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) may be called a chick.

What do they eat?

The blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) eats dragonfly larvae, crustaceans, fish, and aquatic insects. They may also feed on mantis and grasshoppers. The blue-eared kingfisher hunts by catching its prey in its strong beaks by swooping down on them at blinding speeds. It then brings them back to its perches, batters them on the tree branches and then eats them.

Are they poisonous?

No, the blue-eared kingfisher (Alcedo meninting) is not poisonous.

Would they make a good pet?

No, blue-eared kingfishers would not make a good pet. They are territorial, solitary and free creatures who would do terribly in any measure of captivity in any part of the world.

Did you know...

The common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) has seven recognized subspecies, while the number of blue-eared kingfisher subspecies is five. Overall, the common kingfisher is heavier than the blue-eared kingfisher. The common kingfisher also has a lengthier body and a bigger wingspan. The rump of the common kingfisher and its upperparts are a pale blue. the juveniles have green upperparts. The female common kingfisher is slightly bigger than the male. The common kingfisher is a migratory species while the blue-eared kingfisher is a non-migratory species. The common kingfisher is found more in Central Europe, while the blue-eared kingfisher is found in South and Southeast Asia.

The A. m. meninting (scientific classification by Horsfield, 1821) subspecies of the blue-eared kingfisher is endemic to the southern Malay Peninsula as well as Borneo, Sula Islands, southern Philippines, islands west of Java and Sumatra. Another subspecies is the A. m. coltarti. The A. m. coltarti subspecies is found in northeastern parts of India, as well as central Nepal and Thailand. Also found in different parts of India are the subspecies A. m. phillipsi, and A. m. rufigastra.

Since they are such famous birds, blue-eared kingfisher pictures are common on the internet.

It cannot be considered rare to see a kingfisher since they are widespread. A kingfisher juvenile may eat 12-18 fish in a single day, and an adult may eat even more than that.

What's special about a blue-eared kingfisher?

Being kingfishers, the blue-eared kingfishers are exceptional hunters. They perch close to rivers with their preferred prey and swoop down on them at great speeds, which is quite a sight. They also excavate tunnels for nesting that go up to a meter in length. They are almost indistinguishable from the common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis), save for the 'blue ear stripe' or 'blue ear coverts'. It is a solitary creature that likes to have territories as big as 0.6-3 mi (1-5 km). They do not exclusively live in forests and wetlands, but may also sometimes inhabit closed ecosystems as well as canals and man-made territories like gardens and parks.

Are blue-eared kingfishers endangered?

No, the blue-eared kingfishers are not endangered. They are classified as a species of Least Concern by the IUCN. However, their population shows a decreasing trend. Loss of their preferred close-to-the-river habitats in the future may become a threat to the blue-eared kingfishers.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our palm warbler fun facts for kids and blue jay interesting facts pages.

You can occupy yourself at home by coloring in our free printable Blue-eared kingfisher coloring pages.

Subscribe_Hero
Get The Kidadl Newsletter
1,000's of inspirational ideas direct to your inbox for things to do with your kids.

By joining Kidadl you agree to Kidadl’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and consent to receiving marketing communications from Kidadl.

EXPLORE KIDADL
In need of more inspiration?