Selection of Cuculidae to the Hosts Based on the External Characteristics of the Eggs

Wahyu Widodo, Priyantini Widiyaningrum


Most of Cuculidae were known as parasitic birds, and they breed depend on their hosts. The obyective of the study was to know the external characteristics of the eggs of Cuculidae and their hosts which includes several components. e.i. shell color, shape, length, diameter and egg index. Those species of Cuculidae were Cacomantis merulinus lanceolatus, Cacomantis variolus sepulcralis, Surniculus lugubris lugubris and Eudynamys scolopaceus malayanus. There were 117 item of the bird egg reference’s collections in the Ornithology Laboratory, Zoology Division, Research Center for Biology, LIPI, in Cibinong, used as a research materials. Color and form the egg from every sample noted by pursuant to direct eyesight with the eye if possible and assisted with the magnifier, especially at flimsy spots egg’s color. The results shown that egg size of Cuculidae groups are bigger than their host eggs. Generally, the color variation of eggs of Cuculidae and their hosts are white or bluish white and their combination like as brown and greenish. The eggs shape of Cuculidae and host are similar, namely oval with IFO value about 73 - 75%.  The Cuculidae family pays attention to the color, spot pattern and shape of the host’s eggs in choosing the host for their own eggs. Though, there was also a tendency not to recognize the characteristic of the host’s egg. The studies represent an early stage in an attempt to strive the conservation of Cuculidae the bird hosts.


Cuculidae; Eggs; External Characteristics; Host; Selection

Full Text:



Antonov, A., Stokke, B. G., Moksnes, A. & Roskaft, E. (2008). Does the cuckoo benefit from laying unusually strong eggs?. Animal Behaviour, 76(6), 1893-1900.

Arundina, M., Ngabekti, S., Santosa, K. (2014). Kesintasan undur-undur pada media aklimatisasi. Biosaintifika: Journal of Biology & Biology Education, 6(1), 18-23.

Aviles, J. M., Stokke, B. G., Moksnes, A., Roskaft, E., Asmul, M. & Moller, A. P. (2006). Rapid increase in cuckoo egg matching in a recently parasitized reed warbler population. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 19(6), 1901-1910.

Barta, Z. & Szekely, T. (1997). The optimal shape of avian eggs. Functional Ecology, 11(5), 656-662.

Cherry, M. I., Bennett, A. T., & Moskát, C. (2007). Host intra-clutch variation, cuckoo egg matching and egg rejection by great reed warblers. Naturwissenschaften, 94(6), 441.

Davies, N. B. & Brooke, M de L. (1988). Cuckoo versus reed warblers: adaptations and counteradaptations. Animal Behaviour, 36(1), 262-284.

Hauber, M. E., Moskát, C. & Ban, M. (2006). Experimental shift in hosts’ acceptance threshold of inaccurate-mimic brood parasite eggs. Biology Letters, 2(2), 177-180.

Hoogerwerf, A. (1949). Een bijdrage tot de oölogie van het eiland Java. Van de Kon. Plantentuin van Indonesië – Buitenzorg, Java.

Krȕger, O. Z. & Davies, N. B. (2004). The evolution of egg size in the brood parasitic cuckoos. Behavioral Ecology, 15(2), 210-218.

Lowther, P. E. (2014). Host list of Avian Brood Parasites – 2 – Cuculiformes. The Field Museum. Old World Cuckoos. Accessed 20 February 2017.

Mackinnon, J. (1990). Panduan Lapangan Pengenalan Burung-burung di Jawa dan Bali. Yogyakarta: Gadjah Mada University Press.

Mackinnon, J., Phillipps, K., & Balen, B. van. (1998). Burung-burung di Sumatera, Jawa, Bali dan Kalimantan. Jakarta: LIPI-BirdLife International Indonesia Programme.

Moksnes, A., Roskaft, E., Braa, A. T., Korsnes, L., lampe, H. M. & Pedersen, H. C. (1991). Behavioural responses of potential hosts towards artificial cuckoo eggs and dummies. Behaviour, 116(1), 64-89.

Romanoff, A. L. & Romanoff, A. J. (1963). The Avian Egg. 2nd ed. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc..

Sukmantoro, W., Irham, M., Novariono, W., Hasudungan, F., Kemp, N. & Muchtar, M. (2007). Daftar Burung Indonesia No.2. Bogor: IdOU.

Teuṣan, A., Vacaru-Opris, L. & Teuṣan, V. (2008). Aspects regarding some morphological values of the domestic quail eggs (Coturnix coturnix japonica). Lucrări ṣtiintifice Zoothenieṣi Biotehnologii, 41(2), 709-716.

Trijono, R. (2015). Metodologi Penelitian Kuantitatif. Jakarta: Papas Sinar Sinanti.

Tyn, J. van & Berger, A. J. (1976). Fundamentals of Ornithology. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Ins.

Yang, C., Liang, W., Antonov, A., Cai, Y., Stokke, BG., Fossy, F., Moksnes, A. & Roskaft, E. (2012). Diversity of parasitic cuckoos and their hosts in China. Chinese Birds, 3(1), 9-3.

Young, L. (1994). Conservation activities at the Mai Po Marshes Wildlife Education Centre and Nature Reserve, Hong Kong. The Future of Cranes and Wetlands, 166-175.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.