Black-billed Cuckoos

The Black-billed Cuckoo, Coccyzus erythropthalmus, is a mostly-brown and white plumaged cuckoo.


They breed along the edges of wooded areas across North America east of the Rockies.

They migrate south to winter in South America.

They are very rare vagrants to western Europe.


Adults have a long brown tail and a black bill. The head and upper parts are brown and the underparts are white. There is a red ring around the eye. Juveniles are drabber, and the eye ring is greenish.

Nesting / Breeding

They nest in a low tree or shrub, sometimes on the ground. They sometimes lay eggs in the nests of other birds.

Diet / Feeding

Black-billed Cuckoos mainly eat insects, especially tent caterpillars, but also some snails, eggs of other birds and berries. They typically forage in shrubs or trees.

Call / Vocalization

The call is described as a rapid repetitive Coocoocoo.

Black-billed and Yellow-billed Cuckoo - side-by-side

Black-billed Cuckoo

Photo of author

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