Family Cuckoos (Cuculidae)

Least Concern

Mangrove Cuckoo (Coccyzus minor)


French: Coulicou manioc German: Mangrovekuckuck Spanish: Cuclillo de manglar

Cuculus minor

J. F. Gmelin

, 1788,



Closely related to C. ferrugineus, with which has been considered conspecific. Up to 13 races sometimes recognized: palloris (coast from W Mexico to Panama); continentalis (coast from E Mexico to Panama); maynardi (S Florida and Bahamas); cozumelae (Cozumel I); teres (Greater Antilles except Jamaica); caymanensis (Cayman Is); nesiotes (Jamaica); abbotti (Providencia I, San Andrés I); and, in Lesser Antilles, rileyi (Barbuda, Antigua), dominicae (Montserrat, Guadeloupe, Dominica), vincentis (Martinique, St Lucia, St Vincent) and grenadensis (Bequia, Grenada), with nominate restricted to N South America. All of these, however, were based on small sample sizes; larger series now available reveal no constant differences in colour or size among island populations in West Indies, or between island and continental populations. Monotypic.


Caribbean parts of Florida S through Bahamas to Greater and Lesser Antilles, and Mexico (Sinaloa and Tamaulipas to Yucatán and Oaxaca) S through Central America to Colombia, then E to estuary of R Amazon; Trinidad.

Descriptive notes

28–34 cm; male 51·5–76·6 g, female 62·5–75 g. Adult greyish brown above, crown greyish, broad black eyeline, flight-feathers brown,... read more


Low, guttural “gawk gawk gawk gawk gaawk gaawk”, also a single “whit!”.


Avicennia mangroves, estuaries, thickets near water, secondary forest, dry scrub and... read more

Food and feeding

Insects, mainly caterpillars and grasshoppers (Acrididae), also crickets, mantids, stick insects, roaches, earwigs, cicadas, stink bugs,... read more


Breeds May–Jul in S Florida, Apr–May in Cayman Is, Mar–Oct in Puerto Rico, Jul in Hispaniola, Mar–Jul in Lesser... read more


Migratory in S Florida and Florida keys, though a few winter records, mainly in inland hardwood... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). Generally uncommon to fairly common throughout range. Rare to uncommon in Florida (mainly on Gulf coast and keys), where jeopardized... read more

Recommended citation

Payne, R. & Kirwan, G.M. (2019). Mangrove Cuckoo (Coccyzus minor). 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 9 December 2019).