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Cuculiformes > Cuculidae

Jamaican Lizard-Cuckoo

Coccyzus vetula

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Identification

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An impressive long-tailed bird of moist mid-elevation woodlands including secondary growth, where it feeds in the understory by peeking and probing into vegetation in pursuit of insects and lizards. Generally solitary and secretive, but not shy. Note this species’ long, straight, narrow bill and buff underparts. The Chestnut-bellied Cuckoo is similar in overall shape, but it is somewhat larger with a chestnut belly and a grayish chest; also note its bill is much shorter and somewhat curved compared to Jamaican Lizard-Cuckoo. The passingly similar Mangrove Cuckoo is somewhat smaller, shorter billed, lacks an eyering, and has a black mask. Jamaican Lizard-Cuckoos are often first detected by voice: a rapid-fire, ratcheting “k-k-k-kuh-kuh-kuh-kuh-kuh…” that grows slower and louder as it progresses; usually given at a uniform pitch.

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Jamaican Lizard-Cuckoo

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