Feathers of the common kingfisher create colorful feathers due to pigment granules, spongy nanostructures, and thin films.


"The bright colours of the common kingfisher A. [Alcedo] atthis are created by two types of feather barb: one filled with pigment granules and the other with quasi-ordered channel-type keratinous sponges. A broad-band background reflection is added by the cortex of the shiny feathers, especially when the feathers are illuminated from oblique directions." (Stayenga et al. 2011:3966)

Journal article

Journal article
Stavenga DG; Tinbergen J; Leertouwer HL; Wilts BD

KingfisherAlcedo atthisSpecies