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Kidadl Team

AUGUST 12, 2021

Cuculus: 21 Facts You Won't Believe!

There are amazing Cuculus facts present in this article.

In this Kidadl article, we shall be reading about an animal from the class Aves and from the family Cuculidae. The name of this species is Cuculus or common cuckoo.

The Cuculus habitat range commonly includes Asia, Europe, and Africa. These species are carnivorous (mostly insectivorous) and spend their day in search of insects. Both the males and females have a gray upper body and white underbody with small legs and a long tail. Information about their body size, wingspan range, and weight is given in the facts section below. They have beautiful yellow iris which is one of their distinct features. Common cuckoos are brood parasites and lay their eggs in other birds neat. The chosen host bird then nurtures and cares for the cuckoo egg.

This was a small introductory section. Further in the article, there are more interesting and funny facts about this bird. So keep reading! And if you are someone who likes reading random bird facts, then visit our pages on house wren facts and great-tailed grackle facts.

Cuculus Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Cuculus?

The Cuculus is a type of bird. It is a relative of the cuckoo bird. Cuculus is a Latin word that means cuckoo.

What class of animal does a Cuculus belong to?

The Cuculus or common cuckoo belongs to the class Aves, order Cuculiformes, family Cuculidae and genus Cuculus. The scientific name of this bird is Cuculus canorus. The Guira cuckoo also belongs to the same family.

How many Cuculus are there in the world?

Common cuckoo birds are considered under the conservation status of Least Concern. Their population is scattered across whole Asia, Europe, and parts of Africa. So it is not possible to count them in numbers. Still, it is estimated that there are 25-100 million common cuckoos are there in the world.

Where does a Cuculus live?

The Cuculus range of distribution is huge. As the name suggests, the common cuckoo inhabits almost all parts of the world. They inhabit the whole of Asia and Europe and are present in particular areas on the other continents. Some countries where the common cuckoo lives are Barbados, the United States, Greenland, Faroe Islands, Iceland, Indonesia, Palau, Seychelles, Taiwan, China, and northern and western India.

What is a Cuculus's habitat?

The common cuckoo usually lives in an open environment. They can be commonly seen sitting on trees and singing their song. They usually live in the open woodlands and forest edges.

Who do Cuculus live with?

The common cuckoo like the cuckoo birds are solitary birds who mostly live on their own. They come together only on special occasions like for breeding. And at the end, they again part ways.

How long does a Cuculus live?

The longest lifespan that was ever recorded in this bird species is six years. However, the average lifespan of common cuckoos is said to be around four years.

How do they reproduce?

Cuculus canorus or common cuckoo birds are brood parasites like giant cowbirds. That means they lay their eggs in some other host birds' nests. These cuckoos are migratory birds who breed in the Asiatic and European countries and spend the winter in the African countries. The cuckoos visit their breeding region in April. From April their breeding season starts and it stays up to September. They are not monogamous and mate with multiple partners. After mating, the female cuckoos lay their eggs in other birds' (hosts) nests. Some of the common host species are the meadow pipit, dunnock, Eurasian reed warbler, garden warbler, meadow pipit, pied wagtail, brambling, and common redstart. After laying their eggs, the eggs go through an incubation period of 11-13 days. After hatching from the egg, the young cuckoos are often seen to destroy the host's eggs. The time taken by a cuckoo chick for fledging is between 17-21 days.

What is their conservation status?

According to the IUCN Red List, common cuckoo birds fall under the conservation status of Least Concern with around 25-100 million individuals inhabiting the world.

Cuculus Fun Facts

What does Cuculus look like?

Cuculus birds also known as common cuckoos are elegant-looking birds that can be found all over the world. Common cuckoos have a spindle or slender-shaped body with beautiful wings and a long tail. They generally have a dark-colored body but males and females differ a little. The male cuckoos are almost gray in color with a white underbody. But in the case of females, they can be of two different colors. They can be either like the males, dark gray upper body with white underbody or they can be reddish at the top with a dark gray bottom. Both males and females are of the same size. They have beautiful pointed wings. Their head is small and round and has small legs. Both the males and females have magnificent eyes. Their iris is yellow-colored with a black pupil in the center which looks very attractive. The Cuculus size is near medium. The length of their body is around 12.5-13.5 in (32–34 cm). Their magnificent wings have a wingspan of around 22–24 in (55-60 cm). Their body weight is around 3.8 oz (110 g). Their body color is similar to the yellow-billed cuckoos.

Cuculus have yellow black eyes which are very attractive

How cute are they?

Common cuckoo species have some amazing sets of feathers. They are very cute and adorable. But the most attractive feature is their elegance.

How do they communicate?

The common cuckoo has a very sweet voice and communicates through their songs. However, cuckoos are solitary birds that come together only for mating. During their breeding season, common cuckoos sing melodious songs to attract their partner. The young cuckoos communicate by mimicking their host parents' calls.

How big is a Cuculus?

A Cuculus or common cuckoo is a medium-sized bird that can grow to a length range of around 12.5-13.5 in (32–34 cm). Their magnificent wingspan is around 22–24 in (55-60 cm) and their body weight is around 3.8 oz (110 g).

How fast can a Cuculus fly?

There is no exact information on how fast a common cuckoo fly. But it is estimated that their average speed in the air while migrating is around 31 mph (50 kph).

How much does a Cuculus weigh?

Common cuckoo species are lightweight birds with attractive sets of feathers. Their body weight is estimated to be 3.8 oz (110 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no separated names assigned to the male and female common cuckoos. Both male and female common cuckoos are almost similar in size. Some females are identical to the males, having similar dark body colors. But other females are reddish-gray in color.

What would you call a baby Cuculus?

Chick, of course! A baby cuckoo bird is called a chick.

What do they eat?

Common cuckoos are primarily carnivorous species. For feeding purposes, they spend their time in search of insects like caterpillars. Very rarely this bird species can be seen eating the elements inside an egg or eating other bird's chicks.

Are they dangerous?

Cuckoo species are dangerous for their prey only. They cause no harm to humans.

Would they make a good pet?

Cuckoo species are purely wild and solitary in nature. So domesticating them is not easy. They prefer being open in the wild and in some countries, keeping a pet cuckoo is illegal also.

Did you know...

Hearing a cuckoo sound in the spring season is very common. Cuckoo calls may have different meanings hidden in them. It is known that cuckoo birds sing to attract mates. Male cuckoos also sing in order to notify the females about empty crow nests in the territory. In a lot of regions, hearing cuckoo songs is a sign of good luck.

Is Cuculus an endemic species?

According to the description of the word endemic, common cuckoo species can't be called so. They have no one specific region that they inhabit. The common cuckoo (Cuculus) distribution range is vast. They inhabit almost all the continents in this world.

How are they different from regular cuckoos?

Though regular cuckoo species and common cuckoo species are similar in a lot of aspects, they have some dissimilarities too. Some common differences include the color of their feather. Regular cuckoos are black-brown colored birds while the common cuckoo species are gray in color. Their eye color is also different. The regular cuckoo has red-black eyes and common cuckoo has yellow-black eyes.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other birds from our gray-cheeked parakeet facts and stilt owl facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable Cuculus coloring pages.

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