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Laughing Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae) Fact Sheet
Laughing Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae)
Image credit: © San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. All rights reserved.
Order: Coraciiformes (kingfishers, hoopoes, bee-eaters, hornbills, rollers)
Family: Alcedinidae (kingfishers)
Species: Dacelo novaeguineae (Laughing Kookaburra)
Subspecies: D. n. minor
Subspecies: D. n. novaeguineae
Male: 196-450 g (6.91-16 oz)
Female: 190-465 g (6.7-16.4 oz)
41-45 cm (16-18 in)
White head and chest. Dark crown and eyeband. Bluw spots on some wing feathers. Black bands across a reddish-brown tail.
|Distribution & Status
||Behavior & Ecology
Native to Australia.
Introduced to parts of Australia and New Zealand.
Eucalyptus forest and woodland; wooded and cleared farmland; other suburban areas or urbanized area with suitable vegetation.
Least Concern (2016 assessment)
Population in Wild
Stable. An estimated 65 million individuals in 2009.
Relatively slow fliers. Feet relatively weak (while on tree branches/at nest).
Diurnal. Active during the day; roost an averag of 12 hours at night.
Feed on animals on or near the ground. Specific diet varies by habitat.
Insects, spiders, small retiles, worms, crabs and crayfish, frogs, fish; less often snakes small mammals, birds.
Chicks preyed on by quolls, goannas, olive pythons.
Adults preyed on by by whistling kites and goshawks.
Other possible predators: greater gliders, possums, cats, foxes, phascogales (carnivorous marsupial), and many kinds of birds (butcher birds, ravens, magpies)
|Reproduction & Development
Sexual maturity at 1 year; breeding usually delayed for several years.
About 25 days
Usually 3 eggs (range 1-5)
Interval between eggs being laid
1-2 days, up to 4 days
Age at Fledging
- Laughing Kookaburras call in a group to advertise their presence as territory holders
- Complex social lives; breeding pairs assisted by up to 6 "helper birds"
- Breeding pairs stay together for many years
- Need large trees with hollows for nesting
- Chicks are aggressive, even to siblings
- Kookaburra beat their prey against branches or the ground to immobilize it
- Adult koookaburras can eat venemous snakes
About This Fact Sheet
© 2012-2019 San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance. Minor conservation updates 2016. Population estimates updated Apr 2019.
How to cite: Laughing Kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae) Fact Sheet. c2012-2019. San Diego (CA): San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance; [accessed YYYY Mmm dd]. http://ielc.libguides.com/sdzg/factsheets/ laughingkookaburra
(Note: replace YYYY Mmm dd with date accessed, e.g., 2015 Sep 10)
Disclaimer: Although San Diego Zoo Wildlife Alliance makes every attempt to provide accurate information, some of the facts provided may become outdated or replaced by new research findings. Questions and comments may be addressed to email@example.com.
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