Family Cuckoos (Cuculidae)

Least Concern

Dark-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus melacoryphus)


French: Coulicou de Vieillot German: Kleiner Mangrovekuckuck Spanish: Cuclillo canela

Coccyzus melacoryphus


, 1817,





W Colombia, Ecuador and W Peru#R#R; lowlands E of Andes, from NE Colombia and Venezuela, the Guianas and Brazil S to E Peru, E Bolivia, Paraguay, Uruguay and C Argentina; also Trinidad and Galapagos Is.

Descriptive notes

25·5–28 cm; male 42–54 g, female 50–66·5 g. Adult greyish brown above, buff below, crown and nape grey, black mask through eye and ear-coverts... read more


Song “cu-cu-cu-cu-cu-kolp, kolp, kulop”, of which last notes may be omitted; also... read more


Inhabits tropical deciduous forest, gallery forest, secondary forest, river-edge forest, shade... read more

Food and feeding

Diet known to include insects, mainly caterpillars, also grasshoppers, beetles and ants.


Breeds Oct in Colombia, Oct–Dec in Argentina. Nest a flat platform of sticks, built in trees and bushes. Eggs 2–3, 3–4 (5... read more


Partly migratory. Present throughout year W of Andes in Colombia; seasonal in non-breeding period (... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally reckoned to be fairly common throughout its expansive range, although no quantitative data available.

Recommended citation

Payne, R. & Kirwan, G.M. (2020). Dark-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus melacoryphus). 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 24 February 2020).