Red-chested cuckoo

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Red-chested cuckoo
Red-chested Cuckoo (Cuculus solitarius) in tree crop.jpg
A male bird in the Walter Sisulu Botanical Garden
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Cuculiformes
Family: Cuculidae
Genus: Cuculus
Species: C. solitarius
Binomial name
Cuculus solitarius
Stephens, 1815

The red-chested cuckoo (Cuculus solitarius) is a species of cuckoo in the family Cuculidae. It is a medium-sized bird (28 to 30 cm), found in Africa south of the Sahara. In Afrikaans, it is known as "Piet-my-vrou", after its call.[2]

Distribution and habitat[edit]

It is found in Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ivory Coast, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Africa, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. In Southern Africa it is a common breeding migrant, found throughout the area except for the drier west.

The preferred habitats for the red-chested cuckoo are woodlands. The red-chested cuckoo is normally seen by itself rather than in the company of birds of the same species.

Behaviour[edit]

It is usually solitary and highly vocal and lives on forests and plantations. It eats insects.

The red-chested cuckoo takes on more than a single mate (it is polygamous). The nesting habit of red-chested cuckoo is to use the nest of another bird. About fifteen different species of small bird are parasitised but the most common hosts are the Cape robin-chat (Cossypha caffra), the Cape wagtail (Motacilla capensis) and the white-throated robin-chat (Cossypha humeralis).[3] The surrogate family then raise the chick. The bird lays eggs which are brown in colour and number between 20 eggs per season in different nests.

References[edit]

  1. ^ BirdLife International (2012). "Cuculus solitarius". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2013.2. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 26 November 2013. 
  2. ^ Sinclair, Ian. Voëls van Suider-Afrika. Struik. ISBN 1-86825-197-7. 
  3. ^ "Cuculus solitarius (Red-chested cuckoo)". Biodiversity Explorer. Izico. Retrieved 2014-06-10. 

External links[edit]