Mating of the Greater Coucal

posted in: Courtship-Mating | 1

“There are a number of Greater Coucals (Centropus sinensis) residing in our 350 acre campus and when not seen, their loud ‘oop’ calls can be heard.

“On this occasion, I noticed two coucals calling to each other in low tones in the undergrowth with uncharacteristic sounds including mewing sounds (like kittens). After a few minutes, the male flew into a tree and kept calling and the female then flew into a neighboring tree. They then joined each other and mated on a branch (above). This involved a lot of effort and caused some tail feathers to break. When completed, the female kicked the male off her back (left). I wished I had my new Nikon D300s with me so that I could have videotaped the encounter.”

Dr Vijay Anand Ismavel
Makunda Christian Hospital Campus
South Assam, India
2nd August 2010

  1. Thong Chow Ngian

    Dr Vijay
    Thanks for your article on coucals. I have always wondered what bird makes the mewing sound, sometime like a baby crying, which I have heard before several times, in an open grassland area at Tampines Bike park, Singapore but could not identify the bird. I have spoteed on many occasions the Lesser Coucals in this place but have not heard them making this sound. Now I know thanks to you. Cheers

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