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It is a 16 cm (6.3 in) long kingfisher that is almost identical to the common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) but is distinguished by the blue ear coverts, darker and more intense cobalt-blue upperparts with richer rufous under parts and it also lacks the rufous ear stripe of the common kingfisher. It hunts in more dense shaded forest and smaller streams. We saw this bird in a night boat tour. At this time they sleep in the sides of the river and they are easier to approach. A fun fact is that they seem to sleep with their eyes opened.
Sukau, Kinabatangan River, Sabah.