Fan-tailed Cuckoo

Fan-tailed Cuckoo perched on a low-hanging branch

What does it look and sound like? When sighted, the Fan-tailed Cuckoo can be identified by its dark grey upperparts and soft buff underparts. The black tail is notched with white above, and barred black and white below. It can be distinguished from the superficially similar Brush Cuckoo, by its bright yellow eyering. Its descending mournful trill is a familiar sound.

Where does it live? Found throughout eastern Australia and south-western Western Australia and Tasmania.

What are its habitats and habits? The Fan-tailed Cuckoo inhabits open wooded areas, where it is often seen perching on low, exposed branch. The breeding season extends from August to December in the east, and June to October in the west. Host species include flycatchers, fairy-wrens, scrubwrens and thornbills, particularly the Brown Thornbill.

Scientific name: Cacomantis flabelliformis

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