Sumatran Ground Cuckoo Sighting!


sumatranbird1.jpg

Orinthologists just got a hold of one of these iridescent green birds, received from a trapper in Indonesia. The foot-and-a-half long bird hurt its foot, and they are currently rehabilitating it until it is fit to be released into the wild.

The species was taken for extinct until 1997, when a single specimen was spotted. A camera trap snapped a pic of another bird in 2006. But even now, scientists classify the flashy avian as “critically endangered” and say it is at risk from human activity encroaching on its Indonesian jungle habitat.

While the bird was in captivity, biologists recorded its distinctive, high-pitched cry for the first time ever. The bird call—which sounds like a combo ofa rooster’s cock-a-doodle-doo and someone getting stabbed—will help authorities find out just how many Sumatran ground cuckoos exist.

The shrieking call of the cuckoo might have another use: cell phone ring tone.

The Center for Biological Diversity offers bird calls and wolf howls as ring tones with hopes that people will want to help the creatures who produced them. The strange ring tones might also make some humans shriek, but not so nicely on the ears as the call of the Sumatran ground cuckoo.

—Jen Phillips

MORE HARD-HITTING JOURNALISM

In 2014, before Donald Trump announced his run for president, we knew we had to do something different to address the fundamental challenge facing journalism: how hard-hitting reporting that can hold the powerful accountable can survive as the bottom falls out of the news business.

Being a nonprofit, we started planning The Moment for Mother Jones, a special campaign to raise $25 million for key investments to make Mother Jones the strongest watchdog it can be. Five years later, readers have stepped up and contributed an astonishing $23 million in gifts and future pledges. This is an incredible statement from the Mother Jones community in the face of huge threats—both economic and political—against the free press.

Read more about The Moment and see what we've been able to accomplish thanks to readers' incredible generosity so far, and please join them today. Your gift will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $500,000 total, during this critical moment for journalism.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.