British cuckoo migration update

This video is called COMMON CUCKOO, Finland.

From Wildlife Extra:

BTO cuckoos – Mostly in Africa now

Better weather this year has been a boost for migrating cuckoos

August 2013. Since 2011, the BTO have been fitting satellite tags to Cuckoos in different parts of the UK with the aim of finding out what Cuckoos do once they leave for the winter months, and the information that these intrepid birds have provided has been a real eye-opener. Before 2011 the wintering location of British Cuckoos was unknown but these birds have shown that our Cuckoos spend the winter in and around the Congo Rainforest, arriving there in September and leaving again, via West Africa, in February.

With the aim of getting as much information as possible, the BTO have added a new group of Cuckoos to the project. Birds from Devon, Sussex, East Anglia and Scotland have joined those that made the long journey back to the UK this spring, one of which was first tagged in May 2011.

Where are they now?

On the 6 August, the cuckoo known as Derek became the tenth Cuckoo to transmit from Africa, Chance revealed he had made it on the 8 August and Skinner on the 9 August. Derek is currently in Nigeria. Skinner who took the same westerly route, is in Mali while Chance, who took the middle route from Italy to Libya, is slightly further north in Niger.

Ryder is re-attempting his desert crossing from Morocco, locations indicate he was over Mauritania and about half way across the desert.

Still in Europe

Patch is also moving south and is now in Italy but currently remains the most northerly of all the tagged Cuckoos! If Nelson, David and Whortle don’t make a move from their current locations in France, Montenegro and Spain, this could change fairly soon! We’re wondering whether David could try to time his arrival to Africa on a similar date to last year, which was 15 August. However, having arrived later in Montenegro he may decide to stay there for the same length of time as last year (roughly six weeks) before moving on.

We haven’t heard from Nelson or Dart (last transmission from Mallorca) since mid-July so we hope to hear more shortly which will reveal their whereabouts.

Better weather

It does appear the conditions have been a lot more favourable for our tagged Cuckoos this year, with 12 Cuckoos in Africa and across (or attempting to cross) the Sahara Desert. Of those not mentioned above already, there are five Cuckoos in Chad: Waller, Livingstone, Chris, BB & Sussex – the latter of which are only 5km (3 miles) apart! Ken and Nick are in Burkina Faso, while Tor is in Nigeria.

Take a look at the blogs and maps at

5 thoughts on “British cuckoo migration update

  1. Pingback: New British swift research | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: More African countries join migratory birds campaign | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  3. Pingback: British cuckoos have crossed the Sahara | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Crossbills and white-fronted geese at EuroBirdwatch 2013 | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  5. Pingback: British cuckoos arrive in Congo | Dear Kitty. Some blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.