Belted Kingfisher (Megaceryle alcyon)

A mid-sized bird, frequently spotted along the shores of lakes and rivers. The bird sits on a branch looking for fishes and then suddenly dives at high speed into the water to catch a fish. Also spectacular are the birds territorial fight with other Kingfishers over fishing grounds.

How to Identify

To identify this bird, I look at the bill which is long and strong. They are grey [females] or almost blue [males] on the back and white on the front. Females have a second band, brown in colour. The strategy to catch fishes by sitting on a branch and then suddenly dive with high speed to catch a fish is another hint.

Where and When to Spot

I spotted them in Park Angrignon and Rapids Park Lachine. Although, they are frequently seen in urban parks, they remain shy and change the branch with a intense chatter if humans get too close.

Common Names

Belted Kingfisher

Gürtelfischer (de)
Martín gigante norteamericano (es)
Martin-pêcheur d'Amérique (fr)


Megaceryle alcyon