Skip to main content

Laughing kookaburra

Dacelo novaeguineae

The laughing kookaburra is the largest of the kingfisher family. This bird has been nicknamed the ‘bushman’s alarm clock’ as it calls at dawn and dusk to mark the individual’s territory. The call sounds like a series of trills, chortles, shrieking laughs and hoots. It starts and ends with a low chuckle.

Adult kookaburras mate for life and are territorial birds. They use the same nest hole, located in a tree hole, each year. The average laughing kookaburra can be up to 46 centimetres (cm) long. It can weigh up to 455 grams.

IUCN Status

The IUCN status of the Laughing kookaburra is least concern.

For more info on classifications visit

Animal class


Conservation status

The IUCN does not consider the laughing kookaburra to be globally threatened with extinction.




It is not known how many laughing kookaburra there are in the wild.


Carnivore. Kookaburras eat a variety of invertebrates and small vertebrates and, on occasion, snakes.