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Kookaburra (Dacelo gigas)—Bucky ReevesThe National Audubon Society Collection/Photo Researchers
Eastern Australian species (Dacelo gigas) of forest kingfisher (subfamily Daceloninae). Its call, which sounds like fiendish laughter, can be heard very early in the morning and just after sunset. A gray-brown, woodland-dwelling bird, it reaches a length of 17 in. (43 cm), with a 3.2–4-in. (8–10-cm) beak. In its native habitat it eats invertebrates and small vertebrates, including venomous snakes. In western Australia and New Zealand, where it has been introduced, it has been known to attack chickens and ducklings.
Variants of KOOKABURRA
kookaburra or laughing jackass
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on kookaburra, visit Britannica.com.