Thursday, August 23, 2012

Asian Koel

Eudymanys scolopaceus (male)
The Asian Koel is a bird named for its call-- Koel is an onomatopoeia for one of the many sounds that they commonly produce during the breeding season. You can see (and hear) these large, long-tailed Cuckoos in southeast Asia and northern Australia, where they live in wooded and shrubby areas.

The coloration of the Asian Koel is dependent on their sex-- males are a dark bluish-black all over, and look almost crow-like at first glance. Females are brown with creamy speckles all over their head and wings.

Female Asian Koel
Like many Cuckoo species, Asian Koels are brood parasites. They do not build their own nests, rather they lay their eggs in the nests of other birds. Their host parent of choice depends on the location, but House Crows and Mynas are popular picks. Young Koels don't always "eliminate" their adopted siblings after hatching. In fact, most newly hatched Koels will actually act and sing like their fake families!

Though they share the common Cuckoo brood parasitism characteristic, Asian Koels are relatively unique among their family in that they are mostly frugivores as adults. They do sometimes feed on small insects, but fruits and berries are their preferred picks!

IUCN Status : Least Concern
Location : Southeast Asia and Australia
Size : Length up to 18in (46cm)
Classification : Phylum : Chordata -- Class : Aves -- Order : Cuculiformes
Family : Cuculidae -- Genus : Eudynamys -- Species : E. scolopaceus


  1. They're so beautiful! They're very sneaky too! Laying eggs in the nests of other birds! Hahah

  2. Beautiful birds... all cuculids are.


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