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Updates from our Cuckoos

Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.

Ellis lost in Spain

05 May 2023
When we last reported on Ellis' movements he had just moved north in Spain to the outskirts of the city of Caceres in Extremadura, west central Spain. It has now been more than two weeks since he arrived there and data received from his tag earlier this week show lower than expected temperature readings. Taken together this information strongly suggests that Ellis has perished in Spain. You may have seen that he had a rather protracted journey through Africa and we fear that the drought in Spain may have made his recovery from his desert crossing difficult. It has been nearly two years since we tagged Ellis and he has given us some fantastic data as he migrated between Scotland and the Congo. Thank you and farewell Ellis.  

Joe is back

24 Apr 2023
New updates received from Joe's tag late last night and early this morning show that he has flown the final 900km (559 miles) from the south of France back to his breeding grounds in Norfolk. At the beginning of February, Joe was still in the Congo and since then he has flown approximately 7,657km (4,758 miles) on his migration back to the UK. Last year he departed Norfolk on 13 June and if he follows a similar routine this year he will remain in Norfolk for the next seven weeks or so. 

JAC is back!

24 Apr 2023
We are pleased to report that JAC completed his migration back to his breeding grounds over the weekend. Over the last three months he has flown 8,270km (5,138 miles) on his migration north and has arrived at his breeding grounds approximately one week earlier than last year. In 2021 he departed on 23 June and in 2022 he left on on 20 June so we expect him to stay in the World's End area for approximately two months before heading off on his return migration to the Congo. 

JAC reaches northern France

21 Apr 2023
New updates received from JAC's tag on Wednesday (19 April) show that he had flown 923km (574 miles) north from his last location in eastern Spain to northern Brittany. At 21:42 on Wednesday 19 April he was just west of the town of Saint-Gonnery. Where will he be when we receive the next update?

The end of the road for Victor II

20 Apr 2023

We have been following Victor II since he was tagged on the shores of Loch Katrine in Perthshire, Scotland on 19 May 2021. He was so close to giving us two complete migrations to the Congo Basin and back but was found dead yesterday near Valencia and quickly reported by the finder to us. We have since been corresponding with the finder to secure the return of his tag and are urgently trying to arrange a post-mortem. 

While we are of course very sad to have lost Victor II, he may well have more to teach us. It is rare for us to have the opportunity to learn the cause of death of our Cuckoos. If we can arrange a post-mortem it could provide us with useful information about his general condition as well as the cause of death. We will examine his tag for wear and tear and hopefully arrange for it to be reconditioned and reused. We will of course update you with any new information we are able to glean over the coming weeks. In the meantime we bid farewell and thanks to Victor II and focus our attention on our three remaining birds - Joe, JAC and Ellis. 

Ellis moves north in Spain

18 Apr 2023
Ellis has flown 300km (186 miles) north west overnight, taking him from Malaga to Extramedura. He is now just west of the city of Cáceres in west central Spain. 

Ellis moves north in Malaga

17 Apr 2023
After a couple of days close to the town of Casarabonela, Ellis has flown 31km (19 miles) north west and is now just north of the town of Almargen. He is now on farmland of olive groves, corn and sunflower. Last year he left Spain on 8 April and then spent 10 days in France before arriving back in the UK on 20 April.  

Victor II out of Africa

14 Apr 2023
New updates received last night show that Victor II has flown 530km (330 miles) north east from his last location in north east Morocco, over the western part of the Mediterranean and into Spain. By 18:30 last night (Thursday 13 April) he was close to the town of La Pobla Llarga in the province of Valencia. He stopped off in Spain last year too, arriving on 15 April and pausing for a couple of days close to the city of Lleida in the west of Catalonia, before heading north towards Andorra and then on into France. Last year he arrived back in the UK on 1st May.

Victor II has completed his desert crossing

13 Apr 2023
We are relieved to report that since our last update Victor II has flown 1,255km (780 miles) north, taking him from Mali to north east Morocco, completing his desert crossing. When we last heard from him he was 45km (28 miles) south west of city of Nador. Will he linger in north Africa or press on to Europe?  

Ellis arrives in Europe

13 Apr 2023
After a longer journey through Western Sahara and Morocco than we had expected, Ellis is on the move again and by 10am yesterday morning (Wednesday 12 April) he had flown 795km (494 miles) out of Africa and into Los Alcornocales Natural Park in Andalusia, southern Spain. A single update received just after 8am this morning (Thursday 13 April) suggest that Ellis has continued north east and is near Gibralgalia in Malaga. 


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