Cuckoo Finch ( Anomalospiza imberbis, family: Viduidae)

cuckoo finch kruger national park birds The Cuckoo Finch (Latin name Anomalospiza imberbis) is described in Roberts Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition. This bird has a unique Roberts number of 820 and you will find a full description of this bird on page 1081 also a picture of the Cuckoo Finch on page 1009. The Cuckoo Finch belongs to the family of birds classified as Viduidae. According to the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology the Cuckoo Finch is also known by these other names: Parasitic Weaver, Cuckoo Weaver.

In the previous edition of Roberts (ie 6th edition) the Cuckoo Finch was called the


The map of the Kruger you see on this page shows the areas (coloured orange) where this bird has been identified. The basic information was provided by the Avian Demographic Unit based at UCT and I created the maps from that information ... the green dots show the locations of the various Kruger National Park Rest Camps

The Cuckoo Finch is neither Endemic or near Endemic to the Kruger National Park. It is however a rare summer resident

In terms of distribution of the Cuckoo Finch in the Kruger National Park you may not see it in all areas. Cuckoo Finch : see above distribution map.

Identification assistance for this avian species ...

One of the first indicators to take note of when trying to identify a bird is it relative size. For example how big is the bird compared to a well known familiar bird. The Cuckoo Finch is a small bird about the size of a house sparrow. Do not take this relative indicator as anything other than a rough easy to remember indicator. It is not a accurate visualization. The height of the Cuckoo Finch is about 13 cms and its weight is about 20 gms

You will find that the male Cuckoo Finch plumage and colours are different to that of the female Cuckoo Finch

  • Head is yellow.
  • Eye is brown.
  • Bill is brown.
  • Throat is white.
  • Back is yellow.
  • Legs are brown.

This bird has normally proportioned leg length.

Main diet items for this bird ...

The Cuckoo Finch feeds on the ground, and on the wing mainly



Breeding and nesting habits for this bird ...

The Cuckoo Finch takes on more than a single mate (it is bigamous).

The nesting habit of Cuckoo Finch is to use the nest of another bird. The surrogate family then raise the chicks. The bird lays eggs which are white in colour and number between 1 to 3

Habitat and flocking behaviour for this bird ...

The preferred habitats for Cuckoo Finch are: woodlands and grasslands . The Cuckoo Finch is also at home in wetland and bushveld areas.

You will not see Cuckoo Finch in flocks. The bird prefers to act singly or in pairs.

Names of this avian species in other languages ...

Xhosa ... Unknown

Zulu ... Unknown

Afrikaans ...Koekoekvink

German ... Kuckucksweber

Portuguese ... Tecelo-parasita

French ... Anomalospize parasite

Dutch ... Koekoekswever

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For in-depth birding information please refer to these authoritative avian references ...

Robert's 7th edition number ... 820

The main reference source for this data was "Roberts - Birds of Southern Africa, 7th Edition" . Other references were "Newmans Birds of the Kruger Park" by Keith Newman published circa 1980 . Names in foreign languages were obtained from the Percy Fitzpatrick Institute of African Ornithology, University of Cape Town website ,