Blue coua Coua caerulea, photographed by Alberto Garcia Rios.

Belongs within: Neoaves.
Contains: Centropus, Cuculinae.

The Cuculidae are the cuckoos and related birds, a family of mostly insectivorous birds with slender bodies, long wings and tails, and zygodactyl feet. Though cuckoos are widely known as brood parasites, most species outside the subfamily Cuculinae raise their own young.

<==Cuculidae [Apopempsidae, Cuculi, Veflintornithidae]
    |  i. s.: Ceuthmochares aereus ME04
    |         Dynamopterus Milne-Edwards 1892 M05
    |           |--*D. velox Milne-Edwards 1892 M02
    |           `--D. boulei Gaillard 1939 M02
    |         Rhamphococcyx erythrognathus ME04, S89
    |         Phaenicopterus tristis RD02
    |         Polyphasia tenuirostris (Gray 1833) [=Cuculus tenuirostris] W66
    |         Chalcococcyx plagosus S13
    |         Urodynamis taitiensis S13
    |         Veflintornis Kašin 1976 [=Apopempsis Brodkorb 1971 non Schenkling 1903] M02
    |           `--*V. meini (Ballmann 1969) [=Musophaga meini, *Apopempsis meini] M02
    |--+--Crotophaginae [Crotophagidae] B94
    |  |    |--Guira Lesson 1830 [Guirinae] B94
    |  |    |    |--*G. guira ME04
    |  |    |    `--G. piririgua B66
    |  |    `--Crotophaga Linnaeus 1758 HK08, B94
    |  |         |--C. ani ME04
    |  |         |--C. major ME04
    |  |         `--C. sulcirostris HK08
    |  `--Neomorphinae [Neomorphidae] B94
    |       |--Morococcyx MMJ03
    |       |--Dromococcyx phasianellus A61, ME04
    |       |--Carpococcyx Gray 1840 [Carpococcyginae] B94
    |       |--Geococcyx Wagler 1831 HK08, B94 [incl. Leptostoma Swainson 1837 B94; Geococcyginae, Leptostomatinae]
    |       |    `--G. californianus HK08
    |       |--Tapera Thunberg 1819 [incl. Diplopterus Boie 1826; Diplopterinae, Taperinae] B94
    |       |    `--T. naevia FP64
    |       `--Neomorphus Gloger 1827 [incl. Cultrides Pucheran 1851] S66
    |            |--N. geoffroyi [=Coccyzus geoffroyi, Cultrides geoffroyi, Neomorphus geoffroyii] S66
    |            |--‘Cultrides’ pucherani S66
    |            |--N. rufipennis (Gray 1849) [=Cultrides rufipennis] S66
    |            `--N. salvini Sclater 1866 S66
    `--+--+--Centropus HK08
       |  `--Coua Schinz 1821 HK08, B94 [incl. Sericosomus Swainson 1837 B94; Couinae, Sericosominae]
       |       |--C. caerulea PT03
       |       |--C. cristata ME04
       |       |--C. delalandei FP64
       |       |--C. primaeva VR72
       |       `--C. reynaudii PT03
       `--+--Cuculinae HK08
          `--Phaenicophaeinae B94
               |--Zanclostomus Swainson 1837 [Zanclostominae] B94
               |--Phaenicophaeus Stephen 1815 HK08, B94
               |    |--P. curvirostris HK08
               |    `--P. pyrrhocephalus USDI77
               |--Coccyzus Vieillot 1816 [Coccyzidae, Coccyzinae] B94
               |    |--C. americanus HK08
               |    |--C. erythropthalmus SO03
               |    |--C. melanocoryphus SS66
               |    `--C. minor SWK87
               |--Piaya Lesson 1830 [Piayinae] B94
               |    |--P. cayana FS55
               |    |    |--P. c. cayana FS55
               |    |    `--P. c. stirtoni FS55
               |    |--P. minuta SS66
               |    `--P. nigricrissa SS66
               `--Saurothera Vieillot 1816 [Saurotherinae] B94
                    |--S. merlini MS55
                    |    |--S. m. merlini MS55
                    |    `--S. m. bahamensis MS55
                    |--S. vetula MS55
                    `--S. vieilloti SWK87

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A61] Austin, O. L., Jr. 1961. Birds of the World: A survey of the twenty-seven orders and one hundred and fifty-five families. Paul Hamlyn: London.

[B66] Bartlett, A. D. 1866. Notes on the breeding of several species of birds in the Society's gardens during the year 1865. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 76-79.

[B94] Bock, W. J. 1994. History and nomenclature of avian family-group names. Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 222: 1-281.

[FS55] Felten, H., & J. Steinbacher. 1955. Zur Vogelfauna von El Salvador. Senckenbergiana Biologica 36 (1-2): 9-19.

[FP64] Fisher, J., & R. T. Peterson. 1964. The World of Birds: A comprehensive guide to general ornithology. Macdonald: London.

[HK08] Hackett, S. J., R. T. Kimball, S. Reddy, R. C. K. Bowie, E. L. Braun, M. J. Braun, J. L. Chojnowski, W. A. Cox, K.-L. Han, J. Harshman, C. J. Huddleston, B. D. Marks, K. J. Miglia, W. S. Moore, F. H. Sheldon, D. W. Steadman, C. C. Witt & T. Yuri. 2008. A phylogenomic study of birds reveals their evolutionary history. Science 320: 1763-1768.

[M05] Mayr, G. 2005. The Paleogene fossil record of birds in Europe. Biological Reviews 80: 515-542.

[ME04] Mayr, G., & P. G. P. Ericson. 2004. Evidence for a sister group relationship between the Madagascan mesites (Mesitornithidae) and the cuckoos (Cuculidae). Senckenbergiana Biologica 84 (1-2): 1-17.

[MMJ03] Mayr, G., A. Manegold & U. S. Johansson. 2003. Monophyletic groups within ‘higher land birds’ – comparison of morphological and molecular data. Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research 41: 233-248.

[MS55] Mertens, R., & J. Steinbacher. 1955. Die im Senckenberg-Museum vorhandenen Arten ausgestorbener, aussterbender oder seltener Vögel. Senckenbergiana Biologica 36 (3-4): 241-265.

[M02] Mlíkovský, J. 2002. Cenozoic Birds of the World. Part 1: Europe. Ninox Press: Praha.

[PT03] Prum, R. O., & R. Torres. 2003. Structural colouration of avian skin: Convergent evolution of coherently scattering dermal collagen arrays. Journal of Experimental Biology 206: 2409-2429.

[RD02] Robin, V. V., & P. Davidar. 2002. The vertical stratification of birds in mixed species flocks at Parambikulam, south India: a comparison between two habitats. Journal of the Bombay Natural History Society 99 (3): 389-399.

[S89] Salvadori, T. 1889. Viaggio di Leonardo Fea nella Birmania e nelle regioni vicine. XIX. – Uccelli raccolti nei Monti Carin a nord-est di Tounghoo, nel Pegù presso Rangoon e Tounghoo e nel Tenasserim presso Malewoon. Annali del Museo Civico di Storia Naturale di Genova, Serie 2a 7: 369-438.

[S13] Sarasin, F. 1913. Die Vögel Neu-Caledoniens und der Loyalty-Inseln. In Nova Caledonia: Forschungen in Neu-Caledonian und auf den Loyalty-Inseln. A. Zoologie vol. 1, Heft I (F. Sarasin & J. Roux, eds) pp. 1-78, pl. 1-3. C. W. Kreidels Verlag: Wiesbaden.

[S66] Sclater, P. L. 1866. On a new American cuckoo of the genus Neomorphus. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 59-60.

[SS66] Sclater, P. L., & O. Salvin. 1866. Catalogue of birds collected by Mr. E. Bartlett on the River Uyacali, Eastern Peru, with notes and descriptions of new species. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 175-201.

[SWK87] Snyder, N. F. R., J. W. Wiley & C. B. Kepler. 1987. The Parrots of Luquillo: Natural history and conservation of the Puerto Rican parrot. Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology: Los Angeles.

[SO03] Sorenson, M. D., E. Oneal, J. García-Moreno & D. P. Mindell. 2003. More taxa, more characters: The hoatzin problem is still unresolved. Molecular Biology and Evolution 20 (9): 1484-1499.

[USDI77] USDI (United States Department of the Interior). 1977. Endangered and threatened wildlife and plants - republication of list of species. Federal Register 42: 36420-36431.

[VR72] Vickers Rich, P. 1972. A fossil avifauna from the Upper Miocene Beglia Formation of Tunisia. Notes du Service Géologique 35: 29-66.

[W66] Walden, A. 1866. Notes on birds collected in Tennasserim and in the Andaman Islands. Proceedings of the Zoological Society of London 1866: 537-556.

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