#444 Yellow-billed Cuckoo (Coccyzus americanus)

23 May

Very rare bird but can be seen around Montreal as we finally had one visit the garden in a rainstorm a couple of years ago … the photograph I have as proof was blurred and shaded by leaves and only caught its back – hence the picture I am illustrating this with was taken from Wikipedia.

Breeding habitat is deciduous woods from southern Canada to Mexico and the Caribbean. They migrate to Central America, and as far south as northern Argentina. Forage in dense shrubs and trees, also may catch insects in flight. They mainly eat insects, especially tent caterpillars and cicadas, but also some lizards, eggs of other birds and berries. Cuckoos sometimes congregate near insect outbreaks or emergences, including outbreaks of exotic gypsy moth caterpillars.

Yellow-billed cuckoos occasionally lay eggs in the nests of other birds (most often the closely related black-billed cuckoo), but they are not obligate brood parasites of other birds as is the common cuckoo of Eurasia

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