Tuesday, February 19, 2008

3. Coucal

Sighted: 2nd October 2003, Swamp near SAIACS
Family: Cuculidae
Also known as a crow pheasant.

Part of the cuckoo family this bird is heavily built and rather ungraceful. Frequents undergrowth and is often near water. It has a distinctive hollow booming note and is unique in the cuckoo family for having a long straight claw on the hind toe.

Interesting fact: sex-roles are reversed in this genus and the smaller male provides most of the parental care. At least one coucal species, the Black Coucal, is polyandrous apparently.

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