Kingfisher catches skink

posted in: Feeding-vertebrates | 0


“On 25th February 2008, John & By Cobb, Shamla Subaraj and I were birdwatchinbg at Seletar Camp. We observed a Collared Kingfisher (Todiramphus chloris) dived down and landed on a road (left top).

“On closer observation, we saw that the kingfisher had captured a Garden Supple Skink (Riopa bowringii) (left bottom). It must have been trying to cross the road when it was noticed and caught. The lizard was struggling in the bird’s bill and after a few more seconds, the kingfisher flew off with it’s breakfast.

“Just a short note to add another prey item to this kingfisher’s menu.”

The literature lists the food as earthworms, insects (cicadas, beetles, carpenter-bees, wasps, grasshoppers, stick insects, butterflies, moths), spiders, crustaceans (crabs, prawns), snails (gastrapods), fish including mudskippers, amphibians (frogs), reptiles (snakes, lizards) and birds (nestlings, eggs). Lizards include agamids, geckos and skinks.

Subaraj Rajathurai
March 2008
(Images by YC Wee)

1. Wells, D.R. (1999). The birds of the Thai-Malay Peninsular. Vol. I, Non-passerines. Academic Press, London.
2. Woodall, P.F. (2001). Family Alcedinidae (Kingfishers). Pp. 130-249 in: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A. & Sargatal, J. eds. (2001). Handbook of the birds of the world. Vol. 6. Mousebirds to Hornbills. Barcelona: Lynx Editions.

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