Re: birding-aus 'hepatic' means 'of the liver' or 'liver-coloured'

Subject: Re: birding-aus 'hepatic' means 'of the liver' or 'liver-coloured'
From: David James <>
Date: Fri, 05 Mar 1999 10:11:10 +1000

all these Oriental cuckoo sightings in the SE are pretty interesting if not
surprising. Some years they are fairly common in vine-thickets around
Townsville but I haven't seen any this season (and I've spent a bit of time
in the right habitats lately). Has anyone been seeing them in the north-east?


There are some dubious points in your argument but some good ones too.
>1. The bird i saw was large. When being chased by Black-faced Cuckoo
>Shrikes, it was about their size.
too big for Brush
>2. The bird was more rufous than brown. Not as brightly coloured as the
>females shown in Slater, but like the 'hepatic' in Pizzey and Knight. It
>was also heavily barred, ALTHOUGH the barring didn't extent right to the
Slater does over-do the orange in the illustration of hepatic. in my
experience they are usually darker, rufous. I have seen a kestrel-coloured
one. I don't have P&K at hand to compare. However both species can have
barred underparts and tail.

>3. Not once did the bird make a noise. Immature Brush Cuckoos, this
>early in their lives would be crying out for food I believe, or making
>noise. Brush Cuckoos are usually noisy birds, calling quite incessantly.
>I did not hear ONE Brush Cuckoo when i was at Catta that day.

Brush cuckoos are not as noisey at this time of year as they are in spring
and summer.  But most Brush would have left the SE by now anyway, I think. 

>4. The bird was shy. It flew off whenever I got near. I coul not get to
>within fifteen-twenty feet of it. It was nervous like a pigeon. 
Sounds like a cuckoo! But Oriental is nervous even for a cuckoo.

>5. When the bird flew It was fast and direct, and hobby-like on curved,
>pointed wings. The flight did not undulate. In the guides it says Brush
>Cuckoos undulate in flight.
"Hobby-like" is an apt description of the flight of Oriental. 

>6. Shining Bronze-cuckoos chased the bird away, like it was a foreigner.
>I've never seen Shining Bronze-cuckoos chase another cuckoo like this.
a bit circumstantial perhaps?

>7. later, after the bird had vanished into paddock areas, bordered by
>timbered areas, I heard Dollarbird-like calls. In Pizzey and Knight, it
>say that orientals make Dollarbird-like calls. I DID NOT see one
>Dollarbird during the two hours i was at Cattai.
a lot circumstantial perhaps? 

David James
PO BOX 5225
Townsville Mail Centre 4810

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