674. Coccystes glandarius

Coccystes glandarius (Linn.), Syst. Nat. i. p. 167 (1766) ; (Naum.) v. p. 237, Taf. 130, figs. 1, 2 ; (Gould), B. of, E. iii. pl. 241, (id.) B. of Gt. Brit. iii. pl. 69 ; (Hewitson), Ibis, 1859, pl. ii. figs. 1, 2 (eggs) ; Newton, ii. p. 408 ; Dresser, v. p. 219, pl. 300 ; Shelley, Cat. B. Br. Mus. xix. p. 212 ; Saunders, p. 289 ; Lilford, ii. p. 23, pl. 11.
Coucou-geai, French ; Cucu-rabilongo, Portug. ; Cucu real, Span. ; Cuculo Africano, Ital. ; Heher-Kuchuk, German ; Teir el Keber, Moor.
Male ad. (Spain). Head crested ; crown and nape dull bluish grey, the shafts of the feathers black ; upper parts dull earth-brown, in parts tinged with fulvous, the quills, wing-coverts, and some dorsal feathers tipped with white, the upper tail-coverts greyer and marked with white ; tail much graduated, blackish brown, all but the two middle feathers white at the ends ; under parts white, the breast and throat tinged with isabelline ; bill blackish horn, yellowish at the base below ; legs and feet dull plumbeous ; iris dull brown. Culmen 1.05, wing 8.2, tail 9.5, tarsus 1.30 inch. Sexes alike. The young bird has the head blackish brown, not crested, and the basal two-thirds of the primaries are chestnut-red.
Hab. South-western and southern Europe, rarer in the east ; an accidental visitant to central Europe and the British Islands ; Africa, as far south as the Cape Colony in winter ; Western Asia as far east as Persia.
In its general habits it resembles C. canorus, and is quite as wild and shy ; its flight is steady and rather dipping, and its long tail makes it easily recognizable. Its call-note is a loud kee-ou, kee-ou, and when alarmed a grating cark, cark, and that of the female burroo, burroo. Its food consists of insects of various kinds, chiefly caterpillars. Like its allies it is parasitic, and in the Iberian Peninsula places its eggs in the nests of the Magpie, Blue-winged Magpie, and occasionally the Raven, in Algeria in those of the Moorish Magpie, and in North-East Africa in those of the Hooded Crow and Corvus offinis ; not unfrequently two or even four Cuckoo’s eggs are found in the same nest. The eggs are more elliptic in shape, smoother and closer in texture than those of the foster-parent, pale greenish blue in ground colour, spotted, dotted, and blotched with pale liver-brown and bright reddish brown, and in size average 1.28 by 0.96.

A Manual Of Palaearctic Birds
Dresser, Henry Eeles. A Manual of Palaearctic Birds. Vol. 1. 1902.
Title in Book: 
674. Coccystes glandarius
Book Author: 
H. E. Dresser
Page No: 
Common name: 
Great Spotted Cuckoo
Great Spotted Cuckoo
Clamator glandarius
Vol. 1

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