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Updates from our Cuckoos

Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.

No news may be bad news

06 Sep 2012

No further signals have been received for John or Reacher since their last locations in France and Spain respectively. Taking a look back at the temperature data,  the last few messages received for each tag show a lot of variety associated with time of day - i.e. cooler in the early morning and reaching over 30°C in the afternoon. Temperatures prior to that had always been higher than 30°C, even when the Cuckoos were in Britain. This suggests that the bird’s body temperature wasn't influencing the tag's temperature much during these signals and does, unfortunately, support the idea that they may have perished.

The wildfires that have spread through Spain have been caused by chronic drought. While the wildfires themselves are unlikely to have effected these Cuckoos directly, the drought will have made Iberia far less suitable for fattening Cuckoos. 
John behaved very oddly once he got to north-eastern Spain and even made an oblique re-crossing of the Pyrenees, and Reacher disappeared in exactly the area where the recent fires have been reported. Lyster took a similar route, passing through Catalonia (one of the areas where fires have been reported) during late July and stopping off in what appeared to be an area of irrigated farmland rather than the montane forests he used last year. Perhaps he failed to deposit enough fuel for the desert crossing at this sub-optimal stopover location? . 

Little movement from John, Reacher and Chris

15 Aug 2012

We haven’t received any further signals from Reacher since the unconfirmed locations on 26 July placing him near Malaga. Meanwhile, John has remained in France, but has moved slightly north-east of his last position. He is now close to the town of Garein. Chris continues to transmit from the area north of Lake Chad.

No big movements from English Cuckoos

30 Jul 2012

We have seen little movement in recent days from the Cuckoos tagged in England, with Lyster remaining in Catalonia, John still near Bayonne, Reacher still in Andalucia (although unconfirmed locations suggest he has moved to the south coast, just east of Malaga) and Chris just north of Lake Chad.

Reacher flies south to Spain

24 Jul 2012

We received a tag transmission from Reacher in Perpignan, France on the 21 July but the next signals on the eve of the 23 July and early on the 24 revealed that Reacher had continued south and into Spain. He travelled around 857km (532 miles) from his previous poistion and was close to Granada in the Sierra Nevada Mountain region in Andulusia.

No movement from Reacher or John

16 Jul 2012

Reacher remains on the French Mediterranean coast close to Perpignan whilst John remains in the Lorraine region of northern France.  

A quiet week

09 Jul 2012

In recent days there has been little movement from the Cuckoos tagged in England. Reacher remains near Perpignan and looks poised to take the westerly route into Africa through Iberia that Clement and Lyster used last year. Chris remains close to Antwerp and is now 24km (15 miles) NE of the city. 115589 is still about 110km (968 miles) east of Reims in northern France, whilst Lyster has repeated the pattern from last year and is the last of the Cuckoos tagged in England still in the country.

Reacher heads to the south of France

02 Jul 2012

Reacher didn't stay in Italy as long as we thought he might. Just 2 days after arriving he had moved off and was transmitting off the coast of France near Toulon, 300km (188 miles) further south and west. He then headed 265km further west (160 miles) across the sea to reach the eastern most corner of southern France, resting around 12km (10 miles) from Perpignan.

Reacher in Italy

26 Jun 2012

Having made it to Germany by 22 June, Reacher has continued to make rapid progress. By the afternoon of 24 June, he had travelled another 520km (320 miles) to a location 26km (16 miles) east of Turin in northern Italy. He is the first of our Cuckoos to reach the Po watershed this year, the area in which three of the five Cuckoos tracked last year prepared for their crossing of the Sahara. This further demonstrates the importance of this area for British Cuckoos – we expect he will stay in that broad area for at least a couple of weeks whilst he fattens prior to continuing his southward migration.

Reacher in Germany

22 Jun 2012

Reacher was still in Norfolk, close to his tagging location on 20 June. However, a series of locations received this morning (22 June) show he has moved to western Germany, a few km's east of Luxembourg! This is a movement of 500km (310 miles) SE in the last two days. He is the second Cuckoo to transmit from Germany.

Reacher remains in Norfolk

21 Jun 2012

On 20 June, Reacher, one of two new East Anglian cuckoos tagged in 2012, was 500 metres north east of the village of Crowgate Street, Norfolk. He is currently 20km (14 miles) from his tagging location.


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