Cuculus scolopaceus Linnaeus, 1758, Malabar. Seventeen subspecies recognized.
OTHER COMMON NAMES
English: Asian koel, black billed koel, Australian/blue headed koel; French: Coucou koлl; German: Indischer koel; Spanish: Koel Comъn.
15.4–18.1 in (39–46 cm), 0.43–0.65 lb (215–327 g). Subspecies vary quite a lot, mostly in the plumage of females; males are glossy black, iris red, bill light green.
Nepal, Pakistan to India, Sri Lanka, South China and Indochina, Thailand, Malaysia, Philippines, Sulawesi, Moluccas, New Guinea, Bismarck Archipelago, North and East Australia.
Forests, edge and scrub, plantations, and orchards.
Different voices similar to a loud “ko-el” and “kow-kow.” Resident or makes irregular movements.
FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET
Feeds in tree canopy; fruits such as figs, berries, papayas, and tamarinds consumed. Also a few insects and snails.
Brood parasitic; hosts include crows, drongos, orioles, and honeyeaters. May lay more than one egg per nest; chicks do not always evict host offspring, but still decrease their success. Females sometimes feed juveniles.
Not threatened. Common throughout much of its range.
SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS
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