The largest kingfisher in the region. It is unmistakable, with its long, heavy bill, dark, white-spotted back and rufous chest (male) or belly (female). It rarely hovers.
Juvenile male has a black-speckled, chestnut breast; juvenile female has a white breast.
Wooded streams and dams, fast-flowing rivers in mountains, and coastal lagoons.
A loud, harsh 'kahk-kah-kahk'.