Transmissions from the last few days show that all four Cuckoos which have returned to their breeding grounds are still in their respective areas. They are likely to remain in and around these areas looking for breeding opportunities for at least the next month.We now assume Lloyd has perished in Morocco as there is no reason for him to remain in his current position for so long. Last year, the earliest Cuckoo to leave the UK was Chris, on the 11 June, while David and BB left on 18 and Chance on the 22 June. Wallace, one of the birds tagged in Scotland last year, was the last to leave, transmitting from outside the UK on 23 July, just one day later than the last bird, Lyster, in 2011.
Updates from our Cuckoos
Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.
The end of the journey for Lloyd
No movement from Morocco
Lloyd remains at his previous location in the Fes-Boulamane province of Morocco. As the conditions in this area should be quite good at this time of year (there are areas of trees and irrigated farmland in the area) we are not unduly concerned about this. We have noted that the temperature of his tag is tracking the environmental temperature a little more closely than expected, which may be a sign that all is not well, but so far we haven’t seen anything that confirms this. We will have to wait and see how Lloyd fares….
Lloyd remains in Morocco
Lloyd made only a small amount of progress between Thursday 25 and Saturday 27 April, moving 120km (75 miles) north to an area of cultivation around the village of Tassa, at the bottom of the eastern slopes of the Moyen Atlas in the Fes-Boulamane province of Morocco. The signals received were poor quality so this new position does not show on the maps. Although this seems a long way south to be stopping he is presumably recuperating in the area after his desert crossing, in a similar fashion to Lyster did in a date plantation in Algeria in spring 2012.
Lloyd completes desert crossing
The last transmissions received showed Lloyd in Algeria. He had been heading on a north-easterly trajectory but he then changed direction and started to head north-west towards Morocco. By mid-morning of 25 April he was on the edge of the High Atlas Mountains having successfully completed his crossing!
Lloyd is on his way
Locations received from Lloyd mid-morning of 23 April show him in central Algeria and about two thirds into his desert crossing. The next time we hear from him should be early on Friday, when, fingers crossed he will have completed the Saharan leg of his journey. His map will update tomorrow morning.
Lloyd bides his time
A location received this morning (18 April) showed that he remains in Ivory Coast and that the charge on his tag is still low.
Lloyd lagging behind again
We haven’t heard from Lloyd’s tag since Saturday afternoon (13 April), when he remained in Ivory Coast but the charge on his tag was very low. He is the last of our tracked cuckoos south of the Sahara and as he has been in Ivory Coast for a week now and was in Ghana for a week before that, we might expect him to make a move north quite soon.
Lloyd sits tight
A good location received in the early hours of this morning shows that Lloyd remains at his previous location in eastern Ivory Coast, 50km SW of Comoé NP, in the same area that was used by BB and Chance early this spring and by Martin last year.
Lloyd heads west
Transmissions from Lloyd's tag yesterday show that he is also moving west. He has covered 185 km (115 miles) in a north-westerly direction from his location in Ghana and is now in Ivory Coast. Will he cross the desert from here or follow BB and David even further west?
Lloyd in Ghana
Lloyd has again continued to move west. Having been in southern Nigeria on Monday morning (1 April), by yesterday afternoon he was in south-western Ghana, just 20km (12 miles) south of the site at Nsuatre where BTO have been studying Nightingales as part of the Migrants in Africa project. This is a movement due W of 870km (540 miles) in two days and 2,625km (1,631miles) since he was in north-western DRC ten days ago. If Lloyd can find suitable conditions, we would expect him to undertake his desert crossing preparations close to where he is now, or possibly to move a little further west into Ivory Coast.
Scottish Birdwatchers' Conference
Every year the Scottish Ornithologist's Club arrange a one-day Scottish Birdwatchers’ Conference, organised by a local branch of the SOC, in conjunction with BTO Scotland.
Bird ID (Residential, Berry Head, Devon)
Develop your bird identification skills on this weekend course for relative beginners and improvers. Expect a combination of indoor sessions covering the basics of bird identification and outdoor sessions to build your...