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Cuculiformes > Cuculidae

Long-tailed Koel

Urodynamis taitensis

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Identification

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Large cuckoo with horizontal spots and streaking and a very distinctive long tail. Mainly found in native and exotic forests during the breeding season where one or more of its target host species reside: Whitehead, Yellowhead, and Pipipi. Breeds only in New Zealand before migrating to tropical Pacific islands for winter. Difficult to observe up close. Gives a distinctive loud ascending screech “zzhweeet” which can be heard during the day or night as it migrates. There is potential for confusion with New Zealand Falcon; note the Koel’s straighter bill and distinctive long tail.

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Long-tailed Koel

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