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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 8:28 EDT

Great Spotted Cuckoo

The Great Spotted Cuckoo (Clamator glandarius) is a species of Cuckoo that is widespread through southeast and southwest Europe and western Asia. It is migratory and winters in Africa. It prefers areas of warm open country with trees.

The adult has a slender body. It has a gray upper body, long tail and strong legs. Its cap and wings are gray, face and upper breast is yellow, and underparts are white. Sexes are similar. Young have blackish upperparts and cap, and chestnut primary wing feathers. It is slightly larger than the Common Cuckoo at 13.75 to 15.35 inches long, but appears larger with its broad wings and long narrow tail.

This bird is a brood parasite and lays its eggs in the nests of magpies and starlings. The young of the other species often die because they cannot compete successfully with the cuckoo for food. The diet of the Great Spotted Cuckoo consists of insects and caterpillars. Its call is a loud cher-cher-kri-kri with some variations.

Great Spotted Cuckoo