Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.
A final farewell to Cooper
Keen Cuckoo followers will know that we have been growing increasingly concerned for Cuckoo Cooper as we stopped receiving updates from him shortly after he arrived in Nigeria in early September. Having looked closely at the tag data our Cuckoo scientist Dr Chris Hewson has deduced that sadly Cooper has perished. We don't know how he died, he seemed to be taking a fairly "safe" and direct route towards the Congo but he is one of two birds to have perished in eastern Nigeria this year. Cooper has given us an additional run of valuable data to add to our growing knowledge of Cuckoo ecology.
The end of the road for Ripple
We are sad to report that we have heard the last from Worcestershire Cuckoo Ripple. Having survived his unexpectedly long stop in the Sahara, we were very optimistic that he would succeed in making it to his wintering grounds. But alas it wasn't to be and it appears that he has died in eastern Nigeria. He has given us a very valuable series of data showing his journey from Worcestershire via West Africa to Nigeria which will add to our growing knowledge of the challenges our Cuckoos face.
Joe is in Democratic Republic of Congo
Since our last update Joe has been exploring the tropical rainforests of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). He in now deep in the forest approximately 100km east of Lake Mai-Ndombe in western DRC.
JAC nudges south in the Republic of Congo
Since our last update JAC has relocated 40km south within the Republic of Congo. He is currently at the edge of a forested area close to the town of Gamboma in the Plateaux region of central Republic of Congo. He is still south and west of his 2021 wintering grounds over the border in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Victor II moves south in Gabon
Victor II has flown 164km (102 miles) south and is now in the Ogoone-Lolo Province of eastern Gabon, in the rainforest approximately 62km North west of the town of Okondja.
Victor II reaches Gabon
After a week in Cameroon, Victor II has flown 713km (443 miles) south east to eastern Gabon. He is now close to Mwagne National Park. Last year he wintered further east in the Republic of Congo with some time also spent in southern Gabon so it'll be interesting to see if he continues on his current trajectory over the border into Congo.
JAC relocates south east in Congo
Since arriving in the Congo a few weeks ago, JAC has flown 180km (112 miles) south east towards the border with Democratic Republic of the Congo. He is now 65km (40 miles) due east of the town of Oyo in the Cuvette region of Congo. We know that last year he wintered further east in DRC so he may well continue his journey east from here.
Ripple reaches Nigeria
Over the last few weeks Ripple has departed Burkina Faso and moved briefly into Niger before flying over Benin and into Nigeria. He is now in the far east of Nigeria with the latest update this morning showing him on a heading for Gashaka-Gumti National Park, Nigeria's largest National Park and one of Africa's "Important Bird Areas". This is the first year we have tracked Ripple so it'll be very interesting to see where his wintering grounds are.
Victor II reaches southern Nigeria
Having spent the last couple of months in southern Niger, Victor II has recently flown 1,041km (647 miles) south east to south eastern Nigeria. He is now approximately 36km north west of the city of Calabar in Cross River State. Last year he stopped for a couple of weeks around this time just over the border in Cameroon before pressing on to the Congo via Equatorial Guinea. He had arrived at his wintering grounds by the end of October so we expect him to move on from Nigeria soon.
It has been almost three months now since we last heard from Bluey and sadly we must conclude that he has perished. Having made it across the Sahara and reached south west Mali, the updates stopped despite the diagnostic data from his tag not suggesting any malfunctions. Having taken the westerly route across the Sahara which we know is associated with a higher mortality rate for our tagged Cuckoos it is sad but not so surprising to report this ending. Bluey has added valuable data to our growing knowledge of Cuckoo migration.