The Violet Cuckoo (Chrysococcyx xanthorhynchus) is an uncommon resident and winter visitor to Singapore (Wang & Hails, 2007). It is nationally vulnerable and considered at risk due to its small number, estimated at around less than 20 birds (Ng & Wee, 1994).
The cuckoo’s habitat is secondary woodland, forests and forest edges, although it was documented at Jurong Eco Garden on 1st June 2018. When first sighted it was perching high up a tree. With time it came down to almost eye level, making it easy to document. It was then about 6.16 pm.
BESG’s checklist of bird calls and songs has so far no record of the Violet Cuckoo’s call and Meilin Khoo’s video is an important addition.
Robson (2008) reports the call as a loud, sharp TEE-WIT, usually given during undulating flight. The video recorded its secondary call – “a shrill accelerating, descending trill preceded by a triple note: seer-se-seer, seeseeseesee.”
2nd June 2018
1. Ng, P. K. L. & Y. C. Wee (1994). The Singapore red data book – Threatened plants and animals of Singapore. Nature Society (Singapore). 343 pp.
2. Robson, C., 2008. A field guide to the birds of South-east Asia. New Holland, London. 544 pp.
3. Wang, L.K. & C. J. Hails, 2007. An annotated checklist of birds of Singapore. Raffles Bulletin of Zoology, Supplement 15: 1-179.