David Adams <>
Sat, 16 Nov 2013 16:38:16 +1100
Great bird! You're lucky to have spotted them this early in your birding
ventures. Keep an ear out for them - it's worth looking around for a
recording. I always think they sound like someone strangling a sea
gulll...but that's not very (at all) scientific. They can be obvious early
in the season but then get very skulky for such big birds. If memory
serves, they're the largest parasitic cuckoo in the world. They'll show up
later in the season calling again...but not for as many days...to collect
the young and lead them north. That's a fairly unusual behavior amongst
cuckoos, I believe.
Watch for them in flight, too as they've got an unusual an characteristic
flight shape. Sort of like a flying cross. If you spot any Yellow-tailed
Black Cockatoos in flight, the profile is also cross-like, but they've got
very different ways of moving in flight, overall shapes and calls. (I doubt
you would have the slightest problem telling that these are different
species in flight.)
P.S. Yes! Pick up some binoculars, the best you feel you can. Consider
getting a high quality 7x instead of an 8x or 10x, if cost is a big factor.
7x are lighter and easier to carry and don't make a huge difference in
magnification compared with 8x. With optics, you get what you pay
for....but higher magnifications cost more at equal levels of quality.
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