Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike

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Coracina novaehollandiae


Size 30-36cm.

Mainly blue-grey back with paler grey on the front and almost white under the tail. The wing tips and tail have striking dark grey feathers with white edges. There is a black ‘mask’ around the eyes, face and throat. Immature birds only have a broad black streak running from the beak to behind the eye. The undulating flight and wing ‘shuffle’ on landing easily identify this bird.

Feeding Habits

Eats a wide range of insects such as crickets and grasshoppers, spiders, grubs, caterpillars and some small fruits or berries. Often feeds alone or in pairs, but occasionally gather in large groups.


The neat saucer-like nest, made of fine rootlets and pine-needles or casuarina leaves bound with spider web, is small for the size of the bird. Male and female share in nest building and incubation.

Places to Look

Eucalypt and paperbark woodlands, tree-lined watercourses, parks and gardens.


NQ Dry Tropics gratefully acknowledges the contribution of Birdlife Townsville (formerly the Townsville Region Bird Observers Club) to the information on this page.

© Birdlife Townsville

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