A global citizen science platform
to discover, share and identify wildlife

Join Project Noah!

African Pygmy Kingfisher

Ispidina picta


Very small kingfisher, approx 11-12 cm in length, with large orange-red bill and short tail. It has rufous underparts, white square bib and blue back. The face is rufous, and the crown is narrow, streaked dark and azure blue - and there is a large rufous stripe between the eye and the edge of the crown. There are also a violet wash on the ear coverts - the extent of the crown and this violet wash help identify it from somewhat similar looking small kingfishers, the African Dwarf and the Malachite KF. Males and females look alike.


Here observed in a woodland in a large city park of Abuja; in a wooded area close to water - a small stream flowing through the park. In general, the African pygmy kingfisher is discreet, secretive and unobtrusive bird, distributed widely in Africa south of the Sahara, where it is a common resident and intra-African migrant. It is found in woodland, savanna and coastal forest, it is not bound to water, and is absent from many drier regions of the continent. It is usually found either singly or in pairs.


I'm getting more and more disappointed by my travel camera... seems like loosing focus...

Species ID Suggestions

Sign in to suggest organism ID

1 Comment

Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson 10 months ago

Kingfishers are one of my favorites, and I did not know about Pygmys...well done, Ziatan!

Zlatan Celebic
Spotted by
Zlatan Celebic

Abuja, Federal Capital Territory, Nigeria

Lat: 9.07, Long: 7.50

Spotted on Oct 14, 2018
Submitted on Oct 15, 2018

Related Spottings

African Pygmy Kingfisher African Pygmy Kingfisher Madagascar Pigmy Kingfisher

Nearby Spottings

Tiger moth African Thrush Olive-bellied Sunbird Red-veined Dropwing