Strange Cuckoo-shrike

To: "Stephen Murray" <>, "'Birding-Aus'" <>
Subject: Strange Cuckoo-shrike
From: "Greg and Val Clancy" <>
Date: Mon, 17 Jun 2013 17:36:41 +1000
Hi Steve,

I have seen dark morph White-bellied Cuckoo-shrikes with many variations on the black throat/head markings. I have seen ones like the one in your photo that has similar black areas to to Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike. Birds like this usually have some black blotching below the black bib, unlike the BFCS. This area is not visible in your photo. I don't know whether they hybridise or not but I suspect that it is just natural variation in the WBCS. If the bird was smaller than a BFCS then it is not a young BFCS. Did it call? The heavy black marking on the lores of the bird in your photo only reaches the eye like a 'normal' morph WBCS.

I would say a dark morph WBCS.

Dr Greg. P. Clancy
Ecologist and Birding-wildlife Guide
| PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
| 02 6649 3153  | 0429 601 960

-----Original Message----- From: Stephen Murray
Sent: Monday, June 17, 2013 5:21 PM
To: 'Birding-Aus'
Subject: Strange Cuckoo-shrike

Hello all.

This morning I was at Sheepstation Creek Conservation Park near Caboolture
in Queensland. Both White-bellied and Black-faced Cuckoo-shrikes are common
here, and they are normally fairly easy to distinguish. One bird, however,
had me puzzled. At first I thought it was a regulation BFCS, but on closer
inspection it was more the size of a WBCS, has light half eye-ring (a
feature of WBCS), and, even though it has a darker area the shape of that of
a BFCS, if you look closely you can see a slightly darker facial mask area.
The bill looks too small for BFCS. Now, I realise there are dark morphs of
WBCS (which I've never seen), but I have only ever seen photos of birds with
a totally dark head. So, I have three questions:

1.       Do dark morph WBCS have gradations, or are they either all or

2.       Do BFCS hybridise with WBCS?

3.       Have I been duped by a juvenile?

A rather ordinary photo  is here:

Cheers Steve Murray


To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU