Bird Families

White-throated Madagascar Cuckoo

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As the name implies, the crested Madagascar cuckoos (Latin Coua ruficeps) are endemic to Madagascar. These medium-sized birds, growing up to 40-44 cm in length, inhabit the entire territory of their home island, both on the coast and in dense tropical forests at an altitude of about a kilometer above sea level.

They owe their second name - koua - to the manner of singing, in which the sounds of "koa-koa-koa" are often repeated. Crested Madagascar cuckoos suck their loud songs closer to sunset, comfortably sitting on the branches of tropical trees.

Hearing the voice of one of the birds, neighbors immediately join it, forming a real choir. Koua cannot boast of their ability to fly high and for a long time, but they easily fly between branches of trees and bushes.

You can recognize the crested Madagascar cuckoo by its fluffy light gray tuft, blue skin around the eyes and a smoky tail with white feathers at the end. Unlike its closest relatives, the red-headed koua, who catch up with prey and grab it with their claws, the crested cuckoo simply pecks up what appears under its nose. These can be berries, seeds, fruits, insects, snails, chameleons and even small reptiles.

The crested Madagascar cuckoos are not like others in matters of procreation.They do not throw eggs into the nests of other birds, but incubate them on their own in their nests, safely hidden in the branches of trees.

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