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Updates from our Cuckoos

Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.

Clement pushes forward in to the Sahara

15 Jul 2011

Clement's flight continues! After arriving in Africa on the 13 July and settling in what from Google Earth satellite photos looked like the last bush before the Sahara desert, he has pushed forward. We wondered a week ago what route he would take – east through Italy or west into West Africa and he is definitely taking the westerly route. He changed course again and headed about 1,000km in a south-west direction to a location near the Algeria/Mauritania border. His last position at 11.23 GMT put him squarely in the middle of the Sahara desert in area that seems devoid of any vegetation at all. His next position is expected at around noon on Sunday – watch this space to see if he has successfully crossed the desert!

Clement in Africa!!!

13 Jul 2011

After surprising us by moving into Spain over the weekend, Clement has provided even more excitement overnight. Shortly before midnight (our time) he was located over the western arm of the Mediterrranean Sea, 25km (15 miles) SSE of Cabo de Gata, the south-easternmost point of Iberia. Three hours later, the next position put him 180km (112 miles) to the south-east - 45km south-east of the Algerian coast. Clement had become our first Cuckoo to make it into Africa! As of this morning (0900 BST 13 July), Clement had settled in a scrub-covered northern slope of the Atlas mountains in the Sidi-bel-Abbes region of north-western Algeria – one of the very last vegetated locations before the vast sandy and rocky expanses of the Sahara…..

Diana de Palacio (BTO Ringing Office) reports that her mother, Maria Elena, flew to visit her from Almeria Airport, just 20km (12 miles) from Cabo de Gata, last night. She took off in the opposite direction from Clement just one hour before him and reports that weather conditions were very hot, humid and cloudy at that time.

Clement surprises us in Spain

11 Jul 2011
After receiving only two messages from Clement’s tag this month and no accurate fixes, it was a relief and a surprise when his tag began transmitting yesterday afternoon. Even more surprising was the fact that he was in Spain, having moved 640km (400 miles) WSW from his previous position! 
To date there have been only two ringing recoveries from Spain, one of which was in the Valencia region, slightly further south than Clement’s current position. Until now we thought he would continue his migration in a south-easterly direction, as we expect Kasper, Martin and Chris to do once they leave northern Italy, so to find him here, 100km (62 miles) north of Valencia itself and 45km (28 miles) inland from the Mediterranean coast was a big shock! 
Having initially moved in a south-easterly direction out of the UK and through France, as expected, this movement in to Spain has left us intrigued to see what he will do next! – will he continue moving towards the south-west and enter West Africa, or will he resume a south-easterly heading and move into Algeria or Tunisia before crossing the Sahara?

Clement not transmitting

08 Jul 2011

We have received no further positions for Clement since last Sunday (3 July), and have now had two ‘on’ periods for his tag in which no transmissions have been received. Given our recent experience with Chris we are not unduly worried but it will be a relief when we do receive some new positions for him. The charge on his tag had dropped to a very low level when we last heard from him on 3 July.

Clement stays put?

04 Jul 2011

Clement is another cuckoo where we are having battery charging issues. We received a good series of high-quality fixes on 30 June but only one low accuracy fix on 3 July. We suspect he has not moved as this was in exactly the same place as the fixes a few days before.

Clement still in France

30 Jun 2011

On Tuesday (28 June) morning Clement was still in the same area just east of Collobrieres.

Clement stays in the French 'savanna'

27 Jun 2011

Clement remains in the wooded hills east of Toulon – the habitat here (zoom in and drag the yellow man in the top left hand corner of the map for a streetview photo of the area) is structurally reminiscent of the wooded savannas we expect him to live in once he returns to Africa. Presumably he is feeding himself up in the warm weather before continuing his journey to the south…

Clement remains in wooded hills

23 Jun 2011
The latest positions we have show that on Tuesday afternoon Clement was still in the wooded hills east of Toulon, just east of Collobrieres.

Clement may be moving east

20 Jun 2011

By early Sunday morning Clement appeared to have moved east back towards his previous location but the accuracy of this position is low so it is difficult to be sure.

Clement moves closer to the coast

17 Jun 2011

On Thursday (16 June) afternoon Clement was 12km (7 miles) east of Toulon, very close to the southern tip of the south coast of France.


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