Family Cuckoos (Cuculidae)

Least Concern

Black-faced Coucal (Centropus melanops)


French: Coucal à face noire German: Maskenkuckuck Spanish: Cucal carinegro

Centropus melanops


, 1830,

Java; error = Mindanao, Philippines


Thought to be sister to C. steerii and C. rectunguis#R. Races weakly differentiated, and species perhaps better treated as monotypic#R. Two subspecies normally recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • C. m. banken Hachisuka, 1934 – Samar, Biliran, Leyte and Bohol (EC Philippines).
  • C. m. melanops Lesson, 1830 – Dinagat, Siargao, Nipah, Mindanao and Basilan (SE Philippines).
  • Descriptive notes

    42–48 cm; male 195–237 g, female 182–265 g. Adult has black face, head, neck and breast pale buff, face black, wings brown, tail glossy black, lower breast... read more


    Not described.


    Forests, in treetops and tangled undergrowth, second growth. Lowlands to 1200 m.

    Food and feeding

    Not described.


    Nest undescribed. Eggs white; 37 mm × 29 mm.



    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). This was a common species in Mindanao 60 years ago, but the forests have now almost completely disappeared; still common at PICOP,... read more

    Recommended citation

    Payne, R. (2020). Black-faced Coucal (Centropus melanops). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 29 February 2020).