Grey-bellied cuckoo

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Grey-bellied cuckoo
Grey-bellied Cuckoo (Cacomantis passerinus) at Hyderabad, AP W 067.jpg
in Secunderabad , India.
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Cuculiformes
Family: Cuculidae
Genus: Cacomantis
Species: C. passerinus
Binomial name
Cacomantis passerinus
(Vahl, 1797)

The grey-bellied cuckoo or the Indian plaintive cuckoo (Cacomantis passerinus) is a member of the cuckoo order of birds, the Cuculiformes, which also includes the roadrunners, the anis, and the hoatzin.

It breeds in tropical southern Asia from India and Sri Lanka to south China and Indonesia. It is a short-distance migrant, since birds at more northerly latitudes and on higher ground are summer visitors, leaving for warmer areas in winter.

The grey-bellied cuckoo is a bird of light woodland and cultivation. It is a brood parasite, and lays its single egg in the nests of warblers.

The grey-bellied cuckoo is a smallish cuckoo at 23 cm. Adults are mainly grey with a white lower belly and undertail. The wings have a white patch on them. Some female are of the hepatic form, which is dark-barred reddish brown above with an unbarred tail, and has strongly dark-barred whitish underparts. The juvenile is a duller greyer version of the female.

The grey-bellied cuckoo takes a variety of insects and caterpillars. It is a noisy species, with a persistent and loud pee-pip-pee-pee call, with its tail depressed.