Graeme Chapman - natural history photographer - ornithologist

Australian Birds

Fan-tailed Cuckoo
Cacomantis flabelliformis
(Viewing 4 of 10 photos)

Click to listen to sound samples The Fan-tailed Cuckoo is the common large cuckoo that inhabits the shrubby layers of forests and woodlands of eastern and south-western Australia. In spring and summer their distinctive repeated trilling calls are a constant reminder of their presence. Otherwise fairly unobtrusive, they sit still on a vantage point for quite long periods on a constant lookout for food, often a caterpillar but a variety of arthropods are eaten.

Fan-tailed Cuckoos can parasitise a large number of different hosts, mainly those that build domed nests including scrubwrens, fairy-wrens and thornbills.

Adult males are darker coloured than females, some of them so richly coloured that in northern Australia some people get them confused with the closely related Chestnut-breasted Cuckoo.


Photo: 338201

338201 ... Fan-tailed Cuckoo.

Photo: 338202

338202

Photo: 338203

338203 ... Adult male with hairy caterpillar; a very richly coloured bird, Sundown National Park, Qld.

Photo: 338204

338204 ... Fan-tailed Cuckoo, immature.


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