The cuckoo is well-known for its unmistakable call, from which it
gets its name, and for its habit of laying its eggs in other birds'
nests. Cuckoos are fairly large birds, with slender wings and tails.
They are found in most parts of the world, but mainly in tropical
A female cuckoo lays only one egg in each nest, and an individual
cuckoo will almost always keep to one kind of nest - such as that of
the meadow pipit. The cuckoo's egg is usually larger than that of
the host bird, but it has a similar pattern and is accepted by the
host bird as one of its own. When the egg hatches, the young cuckoo
pushes the other eggs or chicks out of the nest, and the foster
parents continue to feed it until it is fully grown.