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Common Cicadabird - BirdForum Opus

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Alternative names: Slender-billed Cicadabird; Cicadabird

Photo by Tom Tarrant
Samsonvale, South East Queensland, Australia, November 2003
Edolisoma tenuirostre

Includes: Moluccan Cicadabird, Grey-capped Cicadabird, Palau Cicadabird, Pohnpei Cicadabird, Yap Cicadabird, Tenggara Cicadabird (in part)



  • Slate grey
  • Blackish grey-edged wings
Photo by Tom Tarrant
Samsonvale, South East Queensland, Australia, December 2002


  • Mid-brown back
  • Wings edged with sandy tan
  • Sandy tan below
  • Grey barred belly


Southeast Asia: found in Indonesia, Greater Sundas, Sulawesi, Lesser Sundas, Moluccas and Island of Timor
Australasia: Papua New Guinea, Australia (New South Wales, Northern Territory, Queensland, South Australia, Victoria and Western Australia), Melanesia and the Solomon Islands


Makira Cicadabird Coracina salomonis (or Makira Cuckoo-shrike) was split from Cicadabird by Dickinson (2003)[2] and Gill and Donsker (2010)[3].

Forms a superspecies with Sumba Cuckoo-shrike, Makira Cicadabird, Kai Cuckoo-shrike and Sula Cuckoo-shrike. Sulawesi Cicadabird is included in this species by some authors: there is no deep mitochondrial DNA divergence.

Formerly placed in the genus Coracina.


Juvenile male
Photo by kerriebr
Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, February 2013

More than 25 subspecies on the different islands and island groups in the Pacific.

Several subspecies are accepted as full species by some authorities: [3]

  • remotus, ultima, saturatius and erythropygium as "Grey-capped Cicadabird", E. remotus.
  • monacha as "Palau Cicadabird"
  • insperatum as "Pohnpei Cicadabird"
  • nesiotis as "Yap Cicadabird"
  • grayi as "Moluccan Cicadabird"

Clements lists the following sub-species:[1]

  • E. t. edithae: Southern Sulawesi
  • E. t. emancipatum: Tanahjampea Island (Flores Sea)
  • E. t. kalaotuae: Kalaotoa Island (Flores Sea)
  • E. t. pererratum: Tukangbesi Islands (Kaledupa and Tomea)
  • E. t. pelingi: Banggai Islands (Peleng and Banggai)
  • E. t. grayi: "Moluccan Cicadabird". Northern Moluccas (Morotai, Halmahera, Ternate, Tidore and Bacan)
  • E. t. obiense: Southern Moluccas (Obi and Bisa)
  • E. t. timoriense: Eastern Lesser Sundas (Lomblen and Timor)
  • E. t. aruense: Aru Islands and Trans-Fly lowlands of southern New Guinea
  • E. t. nehrkorni: Waigeo Island (New Guinea)
  • E. t. muellerii: Kofiau and Misool Islands, [New Guinea]] and D'Entrecasteaux Archaepelago
  • E. t. numforanum: Numfor Island (New Guinea)
  • E. t. meyerii: Biak Island (New Guinea)
  • E. t. tagulanum: Louisiade Archipelago (Tagula and Misima)
  • E. t. rooki: Umboi (Bismarck Archipelago)
  • E. t. remotum: "Grey-capped Cicadabird". Bismarck Archaepelago (New Ireland, New Hanover, Dyaul and Feni Island)
  • E. t. heinrothi: New Britain and Duke of York Islands (Bismarck Archipelago)
  • E. t. matthiae: Bismarck Archipelago (Mussau and Emirau)
  • E. t. ultimum: "Grey-capped Cicadabird". Bismarck Archipelago (Tabar, Lihir and Tanga)
  • E. t. rostratum: Rossel (Solomon Islands)
  • E. t. erythropygium: "Grey-capped Cicadabird". Solomon Islands (Guadalcanal, Malaita, Florida and Savo)
  • E. t. saturatius: "Grey-capped Cicadabird". Northern and central Solomon Islands
  • E. t. nisorium: Solomon Islands (Pavuvu and Russell Group)
  • E. t. monacha: "Palau Cicadabird". Palau Islands (western Caroline Islands)
  • E. t. nesiotis: "Yap Cicadabird". Yap (western Caroline Islands)
  • E. t. insperatum: "Pohnpei Cicadabird". Pohnpei (Caroline Islands)
  • E. t. melvillense: Northern Australia (Arnhem Land, Northern Territory to Cape York Peninsula)
  • E. t. tenuirostre: Eastern Australia (north-eastern Queensland to south-eastern Victoria)

From molecular evidence, subspecies emancipatum, kalaotuae and timoriense may be closer to Kai Cicadabird [5].


Temperate forests and moist lowland forests. Eucalypt woodland.



The diet includes insects, larvae, beetles, crickets, stick insects, fruit and seeds.


The shallow nest is built from twigs, plant stems, leaves and bark, woven with spiderwebs.


  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, T. A. Fredericks, J. A. Gerbracht, D. Lepage, S. M. Billerman, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2022. The eBird/Clements checklist of Birds of the World: v2022. Downloaded from https://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Gill, F, D Donsker, and P Rasmussen (Eds). 2023. IOC World Bird List (v 13.1)_red. Doi 10.14344/IOC.ML.13.1. http://www.worldbirdnames.org/
  3. Dickinson, EC, ed. 2003. The Howard and Moore Complete Checklist of the Birds of the World. 3rd ed., with updates to December 2007 (Corrigenda 7). Princeton: Princeton Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0691117010
  4. Birds of Lamington National Park
  5. Eaton, J.A.. van Balen, B. Brickle, N.W., B Rheindk F.E. (2021). Birds of the Indonesian Archipelago, Greater Sundas and Wallacea. Lynx Edicions. Barcelona. Second Edition

Recommended Citation

External Links

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