Brown cuckoo dove

cientific Name: Macropygia phasianella

Did You Know?

Brown cuckoo doves make loud whoop-a-whoop call to contact each other.

Sometimes called the pheasant pigeon, the brown cuckoo dove has a very long tail and short wings. The dove is grey-brown to a rich dark brown and red-brown, and the male can have a speckled rose/green colouration at the neck. The birds grow to 43 centimetres long.


In Australia, they’re found along the east coast from Bega in southern NSW to Cape York in Queensland. They can be nomadic and have been spotted in Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and the Philippines. Common in rainforests and scrubs, they prefer slightly open woodlands with low-growing plants. When flying, they tend to stick close to the ground. The doves are often seen in pairs.


Berries from both native and introduced species such as wild tobacco.


Brown cuckoo doves breed in spring and summer and lay one cream coloured egg in a nest built in the fork of a tree or at the top of a low tree. The nest is a platform made of fine twigs and vines.