Friday, September 21, 2012

Greater Coucal (Centropus sinensis)


Identification
  • These are large members of the Cuckoo family approx 48 cm.
  • Black head.
  • Black, glossed purple upper mantle and underparts.
  • Chestnut back and wings.
  • Lack pale shaft streaks on the coverts.
  • Red eyes.
Juvenile
  • Duller black with spots on the crown.
  • Whitish bars on the underside and tail.
Distribution

Found in southeast Asia from India east to south China, Indochina and Indonesia.

Taxonomy

Subspecies
There are 6 subspecies:
  1. C. s. sinensis: Pakistan to northern India and southern China.
  2. C. s. parroti: Southern peninsular India and Sri Lanka.
  3. C. s. intermedius: Bangladesh to Myanmar, southern Thailand, Indochina and Malay Peninsula.
  4. C. s. bubutus: Greater Sundas and adjacent islands to south-western Philippines.
  5. C. s. anonymus: Southern Philippines (Jolo, Tawitawi, Basilan and Sanga Sanga).
  6. C. s. kangeanensis: Kangean Islands (Java Sea).
An additional subspecies, eurycercus is generally considered invalid.

Habitat

Scrubland and woodland floor.

Behaviour

Movement
Wanders around like a pheasant, but walks more like a raven. The are well known for sunbathing with wings open wide.
When disturbed they make short flights with shallow wing beats and brief glides into cover.
Diet
They eat large insects, frogs, lizards, snakes, caterpillers, snails, birds eggs fruit and seed.
Breeding
They are a non parasitic member of the Cuckoo family.

Gallery




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