Characteristics and Behavior:
The Mangrove Cuckoo is a medium-sized bird with a length of about 11-12 inches (28-30 cm). It has a distinctively long, curved bill and a striking black mask around its eyes, which contrasts with its cinnamon-brown plumage. This species is known for its distinctive call, a series of melodious "coo-coo-coo-coo" notes. Mangrove cuckoos are generally elusive and prefer to stay hidden in the dense vegetation of their habitat which is why they are more often heard than seen.
- The Mangrove Cuckoo is primarily found in the tropical and subtropical regions of the Americas, with its range extending from southern Florida, USA, through the Caribbean islands, and down into Central and South America.
- Mangrove Cuckoos are highly specialized and are most commonly found in mangrove swamps, coastal hammocks, and estuarine habitats.
- These birds are adapted to a saltwater environment, often foraging for insects, spiders, and small crustaceans.
- The average lifespan of a Mangrove Cuckoo is estimated to be around 5 to 7 years.
- Breeding typically occurs during the spring and summer months when the mangroves are at their most productive.
- The female lays 2-3 eggs in a cup-shaped nest in the dense foliage. Incubation lasts about 13-14 days, and both parents share the responsibilities of raising the young.
- Elusive: Mangrove Cuckoos are known for their secretive and cryptic behavior, making them challenging to spot even in their preferred habitat.
- Mimicry: These cuckoos are excellent mimics, often imitating the calls of other bird species, which can add to their elusive nature.
- Threatened: In some regions, particularly in Florida, the Mangrove Cuckoo is considered a species of concern due to habitat loss, making it an important focus for conservation efforts.
“Mangrove Cuckoo Overview, All About Birds, Cornell Lab of Ornithology.” Overview, All About Birds, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Mangrove_Cuckoo/overview.