|Male, the Pantanal, Brazil|
C. a. americana
The green kingfisher is 19 cm (7.5 in) long and weighs 27 g (0.95 oz). It has the typical kingfisher shape, with a short tail and long bill. It is oily green above, with white markings on the wings and tail, and a white collar around the neck.
Males have white underparts apart from a broad chestnut breast band and some green spotting on the flanks. Females have buff-white underparts with two green chest bands, the lower of which links to the green spotting along the sides of the belly.
Green kingfishers are often seen perched on a low shaded branch close to water before plunging in head first after their fish prey. They also eat aquatic insects. These birds often give a pebbly rattling call.
Variation in this species is clinal. There are five subspecies:
- americana (Gmelin, JF, 1788): occupying northern South America east of the Andes, south to Bolivia and Brazil
- mathewsii (Laubmann, 1927): occupying the area south of americana, to north Argentina
- hachisukai (Laubmann, 1941): occurring from the southwestern United States to Mexico, where it merges into the next subspecies
- septentrionalis (Sharpe, 1892): occurring from Mexico to Venezuela, where it merges with americana
- cabanisii (Tschudi, 1846): occurring in north Chile and Peru into west Ecuador and Colombia, where it merges with americana
Female in Tortuguero, Costa Rica
- BirdLife International (2012). "Chloroceryle americana". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013.
- Fry, C Hilary; Fry, Kathie; Harris, Alan (1992). Kingfishers, bee-eaters and rollers. London: Christopher Helm. pp. 226–8. ISBN 0-7136-8028-8.
- ffrench, Richard (1991). A Guide to the Birds of Trinidad and Tobago (2nd ed.). London: Christopher Helm. p. 239. ISBN 0-7136-3518-5.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Green kingfisher.|
|Wikispecies has information related to: Chloroceryle americana|
- Green kingfisher videos, photos, and sounds at the Internet Bird Collection
- Green kingfisher - Chloroceryle americana - USGS Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter
- Stamps (for El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Suriname) with Range Map at bird-stamps.org
- Green kingfisher photo gallery at VIREO (Drexel University)
- Photo-High Res; Article geometer.org—"Brazil Photos"
- Green kingfisher species account at NeotropicalBirds (Cornell University)