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Blue-black Kingfisher - BirdForum Opus

Alternative name: Black-sided Kingfisher

Todiramphus nigrocyaneus


A medium-sized Kingfisher with very distinctive subspecies.

  • Dark blue crown with paler supercilium
  • Black side of face and black mantle
  • Pale blue back becoming darker on rump and tail
  • Black bill with paler culmen
  • Nominate race with white throat, white breast spot, blue breastband and blue belly, female with white belly
  • quadricolor male with blue chestband and chestnut belly
  • stictolaemus male with black mottling on white throat and largely blue underparts

Juveniles are duller with buffish fringes above, buffy below and with dark orange breastband and flanks.


Endemic to New Guinea.
Not much information about population. Obviously more common in the western parts of its range.


There are 3 subspecies:

  • T. n. nigrocyaneus:
  • Lowlands of western New Guinea, Salawati and Batanta islands
  • T. n. quadricolor:
  • Yapen Island and northern New Guinea (Geelvink Bay to Astrolabe Bay)
  • T. n. stictolaemus:
  • Southern New Guinea (south-eastern Irian Jaya to Owen Stanley Range)


Wetlands - streams, swamps and ponds in forests to 600 m.


Diet little known. Feeds on crabs, fish and lizards.
Perches low over water or high in the canopy.
No information on breeding.
A sedentary species.


  1. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and J Sargatal, eds. 2001. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 6: Mousebirds to Hornbills. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334306
  2. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2012. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to October 2012. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  3. Avibase
  4. BirdLife International

Recommended Citation

External Links

GSearch checked for 2020 platform.