Alcedo gigantea Skull Replica or Laughing Kookaburra measures 4.5 inches. Laughing Kookaburra Bird Skull Replica is museum quality polyurethane cast. 2-part skull (separate cranium and jaw).
The Laughing kookaburra (Dacelo novaeguineae) is a bird in the kingfisher subfamily Halcyoninae. It is a large robust kingfisher with a whitish head and a brown eye-stripe.
It is a stout, stocky bird 16–19 in. in length, with a large head, prominent brown eyes, and a long and robust bill.
Alcedo gigantea or Laughing kookaburra have a white or cream-colored body and head with a dark brown stripe across each eye and more faintly over the top of the head. The wings and back are brown with sky blue spots on the shoulders.
The name “Laughing kookaburra” refers to the bird’s “laugh”, which it uses to establish territory among family groups. It can be heard at any time of day, but most frequently at dawn and dusk.
This species possesses a tracheo-bronchial syrinx, which creates two sources of vibrations so it can produce two frequencies at the same time with multiple harmonics.
The Alcedo gigantea or Laughing kookaburra call is made through a complex sound production system, by forcing air from the lungs into the bronchial tubes. While the structure for producing calls is present from an early age, the kookaburra’s song is a learned behavior.
The breeding pair within a riot of Kookaburra teach the fledglings to produce the signature laughing call after the young have left the nest. The adult male will sing a short portion of the call while the offspring mimics this call, usually unsuccessfully.
One bird starts with a low, hiccuping chuckle, then throws its head back in raucous laughter: often several others join in. If a rival tribe is within earshot and replies, the whole family soon gathers to fill the bush with ringing laughter.
The Laughing chorus has 5 variable elements: 1. “Kooa”; 2. “Cackle”; 3. “Rolling”, a rapidly repeated “oo-oo-oo”; 4. Loud “Ha-ha”; followed by 5. Male’s call of “Go-go” or female’s call of “Gurgle”.
Those calls are produced to attract or guard mates, establish and maintain the social hierarchy, and declare and defend a territory, as their calls are more often correlated with aggressiveness.
Calls are utilized as neighbor or kin recognition to exhibit that groups are still inhabiting a territory. These calls also demonstrate to receivers that highly coordinated groups are of better quality and health.
Acoustic communication between Alcedo gigantea or Laughing kookaburra increases 2 to 3 months before the breeding season, September to January, because male aggression also increases.
Squawking is another common form of acoustic communication in D. novaeguineae that is used in a slew of different contexts.
Laughing kookaburras have been noted to squawk when nesting, exhibiting submissive behavior, and when fledglings are waiting to be fed.
Alcedo gigantea or Laughing kookaburras have a greater repertoire of calls than other kookaburra species like the Blue-winged kookaburra (Dacelo leachii) that produces two simple types of calls: “barks” and “hiccups”.
This large range of calls is highlighted through cadencing, intonation, and frequency modulations that allow more detailed information to be conveyed.