Cuckoo-screamers are a genus of birds in the order Cuculiformes, containing cuckoos, roadrunners, and a few other species. This genus contains medium-sized birds closely related to cuckoos, with similar physiologies. The only major difference between cuckoos and cuckoo-screamers are their vocals; cuckoo-screamers can produce calls reaching up to 170 decibels.
Cuckoo-screamers range in size from around ten centimetres to a hundred centimetres in length. They have a more diverse size compared to typical cuckoos. There is no apparent sexual dimorphism in terms of size for cuckoo-screamers; females instead have white stripes along their crowns in every species.
Cuckoo-screamers have zygodactyl feet, where the two inner toes point forwards and two outer toes point backwards. They are generally stocky birds, with thin feathers that bulge out of their bodies.
Please shut up, it's 4am.
Reproduction & Growth
Cuckoo-screamers are a brood parasite, laying their eggs in other bird's nests. Female cuckoo-screamers are capable of morphing their eggs to mimic those of other species, so that when the time comes to lay their eggs in another bird's nests, the host bird will struggle to notice the difference.
Both male and female cuckoo-screamers have zero parental instincts. They choose a mate at random, usually the first one they come across, and the female will fly off to lay the egg when ready. They abandon the host nest and let the host bird raise their young alongside her own chicks. Babies will not attempt to throw the other chicks out of the nest, unlike other cuckoo species.
Cuckoo-screamers inhabit a temperate environment. They nest in the forests of the Equator Range Lowlands, a vast meadow environment stretching across the entire planet.
Cuckoo-screamers have a habit of calling as soon as dawn breaks over the mountain range, and as soon as it sets in the evenings. An annoyance to locals, cuckoo-screamers will call for about ten consistent minutes. They are a loud bird species during these times, but are practically silent during the day.
A diurnal species, cuckoo-screamers sleep throughout the entire night. They are very light-sensitive which causes them to startlingly wake up when the sun rises.
They are shy birds and are rarely seen in urban, or even rural, areas. They are sometimes seen around forested farmlands, but are practically never seen in the presence of a runo. Through training a single cuckoo-screamer can be tamed, but this is exceptionally difficult.
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The only mountain range from Maloruno. This region wraps around the Equator of the entire planet, and divides Maloruno's two opposing apex predators.
The sixth planet in the Ria Solar System. Home to the runos and white tigers, who dominate the southern and northern hemispheres respectively.