|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
The Laughing Kookaburra is instantly recognisable in both plumage and voice. This large member of the kingfisher family measures 40 - 45 cm in length. It is generally off-white below, faintly barred with dark brown, and brown on the back and wings. The tail is more rufous, broadly barred with black. There is a conspicuous dark brown eye-stripe through the face.
The chuckling voice that gives this species its English name is a common and familiar sound throughout the bird's range. The loud 'koo-koo-koo-koo-koo-kaa-kaa-kaa' is often sung in a chorus with other individuals. The Laughing Kookaburra also has a shorter 'koooaa', which is normally given when accompanied by other members of its family group.
Identification may only be confused where the Laughing Kookaburra's range overlaps that of the Blue-winged Kookaburra, D. leachii, in eastern Queensland. The call of the Blue-winged Kookaburra is coarser than that of the Laughing Kookaburra, and ends somewhat abruptly. The Blue-winged Kookaburra lacks the brown eye-stripe, has a blue tail and a large amount of blue in the wing, and has a pale eye.
Distribution and Habitat
The Laughing Kookaburra occurs throughout eastern Australia. It has also been introduced to Tasmania and the extreme south-west of Western Australia, as well as New Zealand. It inhabits most areas where there are suitable trees. In the central north and north-west of Australia it is replaced by the Blue-winged Kookaburra. The two overlap in range throughout Queensland, although the Blue-winged Kookaburra tends to occupy the coastal areas.
Food and feeding
Laughing Kookaburras feed mostly on insects, worms and crustaceans, although small snakes, mammals, frogs and birds may also be eaten. Prey is seized by pouncing from a suitable perch. Small prey is eaten whole, but larger prey is killed by bashing it against the ground or tree branch. Laughing Kookaburras often become quite tame around humans and will readily accept scraps of meat. This 'pre-processed' food is still beaten against a perch before swallowing.
Laughing Kookaburras breed from August to January. The birds are believed to pair for life. The nest is a bare chamber in a naturally occurring tree hollow or in a burrow excavated in an arboreal (tree-dwelling) termite mound. Both sexes share the incubation duties and both care for the young. Other Laughing Kookaburras, usualy offspring of the previous 1-2 years, act as 'helpers' during the breeding season. Every bird in the group shares all parenting duties.
cecilia, Athila, berek, TAZ, wallhalla15, livios, annagrace has marked this note useful
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This is beautiful,well caught...
- [2005-11-09 20:32]
BEAUTIFUL PORTRAIT TONI!
Excellent focus on the eye and perfect exposure. Shallow DOF creates beautiful BG and composition is beautifully balanced.
A lovely shot, TFS.
- berek (0)
- [2005-11-10 2:13]
good timing. nice colors. thanks for your sharing.
- [2005-11-10 3:44]
Superbe photo de qualité bien complétée par un note intéressante mais en anglais ;-) Compliments Toni et merci pour le partage.
" la Vie est si rare dans l'Univers et la Nature si précieuse, prenons-en soi " Christian...
Hi Toni, very nice capture with great colours and sharpness/dof. Great POV and very good composition. Thanks for sharing.
- [2005-11-10 16:12]
Toni, this is really great.
Excellent exposure, dof, pov and composition.
Lovely pose and bg too.
Well captured Toni,
Sorry it's a rushed visit tonight.
Your post is well worth a big green smile.
Thanks for posting
Nice detail and pose, the only suggestion I have is to increase highlights at the top of the head to see if you can recover some of the feather detail or clone from the adjacent feathers to fill in. Good capture.
Great job on the DOF, it is perfect! Good POV and well composed too.