Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)

Grey-headed Kingfisher (Halcyon leucocephala) - HBW 6, p. 209

French: Martin-chasseur à tête grise German: Graukopfliest Spanish: Alción Cabeciblanco
Other common names: Grey-hooded/Chestnut-bellied(!) Kingfisher

Taxonomy: Alcedo leucocephala P. L. S. Müller, 1776, Senegal.
Forms a superspecies with H. pileata. Proposed race centralis, described from Kenya and N Tanzania, now included within race hyacinthina. Five subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution:

  • acteon (Lesson, 1830) - Cape Verde Is (Brava, Fogo, Santiago).
  • leucocephala (P. L. S. Müller, 1776) - Senegambia E to Eritrea and Somalia, S to Gabon, NE Zaire, L Victoria basin and N Tanzania.
  • semicaerulea (J. F. Gmelin, 1788) - SW Arabia, from Mecca S to Yemen and E to Oman (Taqa); possibly winters in Somalia.

     See all 5 subspecies
  • acteon (Lesson, 1830) - Cape Verde Is (Brava, Fogo, Santiago).
  • leucocephala (P. L. S. Müller, 1776) - Senegambia E to Eritrea and Somalia, S to Gabon, NE Zaire, L Victoria basin and N Tanzania.
  • semicaerulea (J. F. Gmelin, 1788) - SW Arabia, from Mecca S to Yemen and E to Oman (Taqa); possibly winters in Somalia.
  • hyacinthina Reichenow, 1900 - SE Somalia, coastal Kenya and Tanzania (S to Dar es Salaam and W to Pare Mts and Kilosa).
  • pallidiventris Cabanis, 1880 - Zaire and Tanzania (except E) S to N Namibia and NE South Africa; S populations migrate N to Zaire, Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya.