blue winged kookaburra on a branch
Blue Winged Kookaburra
Dacelo leachii

Kookaburras are birds native to Australia. They are often referred to as laughing kookaburras because of their unusual bird call, which is said to sound like human laughter, but you can decide how the kookaburra sounds after watching the You Tube video below.

Although you will find kookaburras in forested and wooded areas, they are often found in urban areas and in many zoos.

spangled kookaburra (Dacelo tyro)
Dacelo tyro)

Kookaburras are also called Kingfishers and kookaburras are the largest of the kingfisher family and are also the fastest flyers.

There are three families of Kingfishers: Alcedinidae, Cerylidae, and Halcyonidae. Kookaburras belong to the family Halcyonidae and the genus Dacelo.

Although most birds from the kingfisher family eat fish (which is how their common name was derived), kookaburras don't eat fish. Instead, they eat small mammals, such as mice and other rodents, small birds and reptiles, and insects.

laughing kookaburra (dacelo-novaeguineae)
Dacelo Novaeguineae

After capturing their prey in their beaks, kookaburras often smash their prey against a tree or rock to break their prey's bones for ease of eating and for easier digestion. Sometimes they will even drop their prey from great heights for this same purpose.

Kookaburras are territorial birds and will nest in the same area year after year. They make their nests in tree hollows and termite mounds.

Males and females have similar plumage.

Kookaburras mate for life. Their eggs are white and are laid a day apart and hatch in about 24-26 days. Like all birds, the chicks are born featherless and helpless. The chicks are fed and cared for by both parents.

Kookaburras are long-lived birds and can live in captivity for 20 years or more.