Family Kingfishers (Alcedinidae)


South Philippine Dwarf-kingfisher (Ceyx mindanensis)


French: Martin-pêcheur de Mindanao German: Mindanaozwergfischer Spanish: Martín pigmeo de Mindanao

Ceyx Mindanensis


, 1890,

no locality = Ayala, Mindanao


Part of the C. erithaca species-group. Forms basilanica (Basilan) and platenae (Mindanao) are synonyms of mindanensis; all three described in same year, with precise month of platenae disputed, but mindanensis generally considered to have priority. Hitherto considered conspecific with C. melanurus, but differs in its lack of blue neck patch (2); lack of blue starring on wing-coverts (2); strong lilac iridescence on head sides, mantle and back and as strong spangling from mid-crown to nape (2); dull rufous tips of wing-coverts and edges of secondaries (ns[1])#R; plus larger size, with effect size for wing vs intermediate-sized C. melanurus samarensis (n=6) 1.3 (score 1); nominate melanurus is notably smaller; a recent molecular study also found strong support for the sister relationship of mindanensis and a clade comprising C. m. melanurus and C. m. samarensis#R. Monotypic.


Mindanao and Basilan (S Philippines).

Descriptive notes

13·2 cm. Tiny kingfisher with three toes. Rufous plumage, washed lilac on ear-coverts, crown, breast and rump, with white throat and belly, off-white lores, blue-and-white... read more


Apparently very similar to that of C. melanurus, an insect-like note, given either singly... read more


Lowland specialist, inhabiting forest understorey and second growth from sea-level to 750 m.... read more

Food and feeding

No known differences from C. melanurus.


No information, except an immature collected in May.


Presumably sedentary.

Status and conservation

VULNERABLE. Overall population estimated at between 2500 and 10,000 mature individuals, and is suspected to be declining, with the overall range estimated to be 95,500 km².... read more

Recommended citation

del Hoyo, J., Collar, N. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). South Philippine Dwarf-kingfisher (Ceyx mindanensis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 22 November 2019).