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Chestnut-bellied Cuckoo - BirdForum Opus

Photo by Stanley Jones
Near Niagra in the Cockpit Country, Cornwall State, St. James Parish, Jamaica, November 2010

Alternative names: Old Man Bird; Hunter

Coccyzus pluvialis


50cm. A large cuckoo.

  • Dull brown upperparts
  • Light grey face and breast, paler throat
  • Black orbital skin
  • Red to brown eye
  • Heavy, thick and decurved blackish bill
  • Dark rufous belly
  • Long, purple-glossed black tail with broad white tips

Sexes similar. Juveniles with unglossed dark brown tail but already with broad white tips.


Caribbean: endemic to Jamaica.
An uncommon and poorly known restricted-range species.


This is a monotypic species[1].
Was formerly placed in genus Hyetornis.


Moist lowland tropical forests. Also in secondary forest, thickets in open areas and woodland. From lowlands up to 1500m.



Feeds on lizards, insects, mice, caterpillars, nestlings and eggs.
Forages in the middly storey and canopy of the forest.


The nest is a shallow saucer made of twigs and placed in a tree. Lays 2 to 4 eggs.


A resident species. Moves to lower elevations in winter.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, B.L. Sullivan, C. L. Wood, and D. Roberson. 2013. The eBird/Clements checklist of birds of the world: Version 6.8., with updates to August 2013. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliot, and J Sargatal, eds. 1997. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 4: Sandgrouse to Cuckoos. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8487334221

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