Groove-billed Ani

Crotophaga sulcirostris




Cuckoos, Roadrunners and Anis (Cuculidae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

Pale blue

Number of Eggs:

3 - 4

Incubation Days:

13 - 14

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

5 - 15 feet above ground., In thorny shrub.

Nest Material:

Sticks., Lined with fresh vegetation.





Groove-billed Ani: Medium-sized black bird with iridescent blue and green overtones, with a very long tail (half the length of the bird). Bill is huge, with arched ridge and narrow grooves. Sexes are similar.

Range and Habitat

Groove-billed Ani: Breeds along the Rio Grande river valley and is a resident in much of central and southern Mexico. Migratory birds winter along the Gulf Coast to Florida. Preferred habitats include semi-open habitats, avoiding unbroken forests, including overgrown fields, thickets, and woodland edges.

Breeding and Nesting

Groove-billed Ani: Three to four pale blue eggs are laid in a nest made of sticks, lined with fresh vegetation, and built from 5 to 15 feet above the ground in a low tree or shrub. Incubation ranges from 13 to 14 days and is carried out by both parents; alpha male may incubate at night.

Foraging and Feeding

Groove-billed Ani: Forages by following livestock to catch insects disturbed by grazing; sometimes picks ticks from the backs of cattle. Also takes fruits, berries, small lizards, frogs, and snakes.


Groove-billed Ani: Song is a soft, gurgling "TEE-hoe", repeated from 10 to 12 times. Call is a rollicking "wee-cup."

Similar Species

Groove-billed Ani: Smooth-billed Ani has a larger bill with no distinct grooves and has a different voice.

Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X