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Southern Coucal | Birds And Me

Southern Coucal


Southern Coucal

Scientific Name:  Centropus (sinensis) parroti

Southern Coucal image

Southern Coucal  Photo by:  --

Bird Type:  Perching Birds    691  Views


From Greater by smaller size, blue-green(rather than purplish) gloss to lack head and body, less rufous on mantle, and brownish forehead and throat. Unlike Greater, juvenile plumage is similar to adult, with head and body dull blackish and lacking prominent barring. Chestnut wings are duller, and contrast less with body than in adult, and coverts and tertials are marked with black (andtherefore more closely resembles Green-billed Coucal).


  • 48-48 cm

  • 19-19 Inch

  • orange

  • blue  (Bird may have more colors)
  •    বড় কুবো
  •    કૂકડિયો કુંભાર
  •    महोख, महोक कूक
  •    ಕೆಂಬೂತ
  •    ചെമ്പോത്ത്
  •    भारद्वाज, सोनकावळा, कुक्कुटकुंभा, कुंभारकावळा, सुलक्षणी, नपिता, चमारकुकडी, कुंभार्‍या (आदिवासी भाग)
  •    ढोडे गोकुल
  •    ଡାହୁକ
  •    ਕਮਾਦੀ ਕੁੱਕੜ
  •    कुक्कुभ
  •    செம்போத்து, செம்பகம்
  •    జెముడుకాకి

Habits like Greater's. Open woods, thick scrub, grassland and dense cover in gardens.


Southern Coucal feeds on large insects, caterpillars, small vertebrates (young mice), snails, lizards, birds’ eggs, fruits and seeds.


A short series of resonant, piping hoots, the first note shortest, the rest of the rest of the phrase rising slightly and then dropping off again.


This is a large species of cuckoo at 48 cm. The head is black, upper mantle and underside are black glossed with purple. The back and wings are chestnut brown. There are no pale shaft streaks on the coverts. The eyes are ruby red. Juveniles are duller black with spots on the crown and there are whitish bars on the underside and tail. There are several geographic races and some of these populations are sometimes treated as full species. Earlier treatments included the brown coucal (C. (s.) andamanensis) under this name. Rasmussen & Anderton (2005) suggest that the race parroti may be a full species – the southern coucal which is found in peninsular India (northern boundary unclear). The race intermedius of the Assam and Bangladesh region is smaller than the nominate race found in the sub-Himalayan zone. Songs of the races are said to vary considerably. Race parroti of southern India has a black head and the underparts glossed blue and has the forehead, face and throat more brownish. The sexes are similar in plumage but females are slightly larger.

    Resident (inc. local and altitudinal migrants)
    Former range (no recent records but may still survive)
    Summer visitor (including summer monsoon)
    Winter visitor
    Passage (autumn and/or spring) visitor
    known to be occasional, scarce or erratic
    Small isolated population (actual range smaller)  
    Isolated record(s) - one or more in the same area  
 colour coded for seasonality as per coloured ranges, black denotes unspecified season