What is the function of Channel-billed Cuckoo's calling flights?

To: "'Philip Veerman'" <>, "'Birding Aus'" <>
Subject: What is the function of Channel-billed Cuckoo's calling flights?
From: "Stephen Ambrose" <>
Date: Tue, 6 Dec 2011 15:44:26 +1100
I think it is more likely to ensure "safety in numbers" especially while in
flight. A lone individual is more likely to be mobbed by a nest host species
(currawong or magpie) or preyed upon by a predator (large raptor) than one
that is part of a flock. An individual calling as it takes flight alerts
others to follow. Calling while in flight keeps individuals within a flock
close together, especially if they are flying at night.

Dr Stephen Ambrose
Ryde NSW

-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of Philip Veerman
Sent: Tuesday, 6 December 2011 2:56 PM
To: 'Birding Aus'
Subject: What is the function of Channel-billed Cuckoo's
calling flights?

Interesting question. Presumably, like most migrant cuckoos they call for
social or sexual reasons when they arrive at their breeding areas. But I
don't think that is the question being asked. Which raises to me the idea
that yes they are cuckoos, but in their way of feeding they are different
from most cuckoos. They are mainly fruit eaters. I would think that fruit is
a geographically concentrated food source, as distinct from the more evenly
spread insect food source that most cuckoos use. So I propose (for
consideration, with no proof I hope you understand) that maybe it is the
calling related to finding food - if they want to share it that is, or maybe
it provides a way to assemble in groups at places with abundant food.


-----Original Message-----From: 
 On Behalf Of Peter Shute
Sent: Tuesday, 6 December 2011 8:29 AM  To: 'Greg & Val Clancy'; 'Laurie
Knight'; 'Birding Aus'  Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] What is the function of
Channel-billedCuckoo callingflights?

What's the most CBCs you could expect to see in a flock? Do any other cuckoo
species fly in flocks like that? 

Peter Shute 

> -----Original Message-----> From: >
 On Behalf Of 
> Greg & Val Clancy     > Sent: Tuesday, 6 December 2011 7:41 AM        >
To: Laurie Knight; Birding Aus
> Subject: Re: [Birding-Aus] What is the function of Channel-billed Cuckoo
> As they call at all times of the breeding cycle I would think
> that the 
> suggestion that it is to 'pick up' immature birds would not 
> fully explain 
> why they call in flight.
> Regards
> Greg
> Dr Greg. P. Clancy
> Ecologist and Wildlife Guide
> Coutts Crossing

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