Family Cuckoos (Cuculidae)

Least Concern

Striped Cuckoo (Tapera naevia)


French: Géocoucou tacheté German: Streifenkuckuck Spanish: Cuclillo crespín
Other common names: American Striped Cuckoo

Cuculus nævius


, 1766,



Proposed races excellens (S Mexico), major (Pacific slope of S Mexico) and chochi (Paraguay) described mainly on basis of size, but all populations show considerable overlap in measurements#R. Monotypic.


S Mexico to E Panama and Colombia, E to the Guianas, including Margarita I (Venezuela) and Trinidad, and throughout Brazil S to W Ecuador, N Peru, Bolivia, Paraguay, N Argentina and Uruguay.

Descriptive notes

26–30 cm; male 40–58·4 g, female 40·4–59 g. Adult brown above, streaked buff and black, head with striped blackish and rufous crest, white... read more


Song 3–5 whistled notes, “pee-pee-pee-PEEdee”. Call a mellow whistle, second note... read more


Second-growth scrub, low seasonally wet grassland, river-island scrub, open country with scattered... read more

Food and feeding

Insects, especially grasshoppers, caterpillars; as with other parasitic cuckoos, young take whatever foster parents bring, including... read more


Breeds Jun in S Mexico (Oaxaca), nearly all year in Surinam, nearly all year in French Guiana, but sings most early in dry season. Brood-... read more


Resident in most of range; seasonal in Argentina, where adults migrate from breeding area (Tucum... read more

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened. A shy and solitary species, variably common to uncommon; call is one of typical sounds of areas of secondary growth in South America. Species has... read more

Recommended citation

Payne, R. (2020). Striped Cuckoo (Tapera naevia). 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 4 April 2020).