Scientific Name : Centropus sinensis
Family : Cuculidae
Tamil Name : Kalli kaakaa
Description :A clumsy glossy black bird wit h conspicuous chestnut wings and long broad back graduated tail. It is the size of a house crow. The eyes are ruby red. Juveniles are duller black with spots on the crown and there are whitish bars on the underside and tail.
Distribution and status: Distributed throughout Indian Union, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Myanmar. Four races are recognized based on their colouration.
Habitat : One of the non parasitic cuckoos and largely terrestrial. Affects open forest, scrub anad bush country intersped with grassland and shrubbery and groves about human habitation.
Habits :It stalks about along the ground and clambers and hops with ability amongst dead leaves in search of food. They sunbathe in the mornings singly or in pairs on the top of vegetation with their wings spread out. The territory of a nesting pair has been found in southern India
Food: Caterpillars, large insects, snails, lizards, young mice and birds eggs.
Life cycle: Breeding season is between February to September which varies locally. Nest is a large untidy globular mass of twigs, leaves with lateral entrance. Nests are placed in the centre of a thorny scrub at moderate height. 3-4 eggs are laid which are chacky glosses yellow.
Role in the Environment : Being a large bird of prey, Coucal is an important predator in the scrub land ecosystem.
Photo source : Http//.commons.wikimedia.org