Concerns are mounting for Sussex, as we haven’t received any transmissions from his tag in more than two weeks and the temperature sensor on the last transmission gave an unusually low reading. We would normally expect this to be around body temperature, since the tag is fitted to the body, so a low temperature reading normally indicates a problem.
Updates from our Cuckoos
Read the latest updates from our Cuckoos on their migration.
Concern for Sussex
Sussex sitting tight
Sussex has been in his current position within Central African Republic since 3 September, and, while he was at that point the most southerly Cuckoo, during that time most of the other tagged Cuckoos have continued on southwards, leaving him in their wake. He is the only Cuckoo currently in Central African Republic and only BB and Chance are located further north than him.
Sussex is the most southerly Cuckoo
By the 31 August, Sussex had left Chad and headed south, revealing his new position in the Central African Republic. The excitement at Whortle and Patch's movements over the weekend meant this new movement was slightly overshadowed but he has actually travelled 450km (280 miles) and is now further south than Nick, making him the most southerly of all our tagged Cuckoos! Only David is also in the Central African Republic, in the very north tip, about 550km (340 miles) away from Sussex's location.
Four Cuckoos remain in Chad
Waller, Chris, Sussex and BB are all still in Chad and sending regular transmissions. Last year Chris was the first of our tagged Cuckoos to move south of Chad, arriving in the Central African Republic by the 18 September. Not long after this the Cuckoos moved on to the Congo Rainforest.
Sussex and BB in same area
BB, one of the Cuckoos tagged in Scotland in spring 2012 and Sussex the Cuckoo, tagged in spring 2013 are now only around 5km (3 miles) from each other within Chad – much closer than they are during their breeding season in the UK! BB moved to a location just south of Dassik, having flown 250km (155 miles) by 8 August before Sussex also headed south, travelling 230km (140 miles), to just north of Dassik and BB’s location by 10 August. They are so close together you can only see one icon unless you zoom in really close on the map!
Sussex moves east
From north of Lake Chad, Sussex moved 165km (100 miles) east and then 105km (65 miles) south-east by the 4 August, in the direction of Waller and Chris’s locations. There are currently five Cuckoos in Chad; BB, Waller, Livingstone, Chris and Sussex.
Sussex arrives in Africa!
Signals on 27 July show that Sussex was still in Corsica but by the 30 July he was on his way. Poor locations early that morning show Sussex over the sea, between Sardinia and Sicily, heading south. By mid-morning of the 1 August, transmissions revealed that he had indeed been in active migration and had completed the 3300km (2000 miles) journey to a location in Chad! He joins Chris and BB there. The last good signal located him 75km (45 miles) north-west of Lake Chad. Tor is also close by, in Nigeria.
Sussex follows Tour De France
Locations on 27 June placed Sussex in Sardinia but by late afternoon on the 29 June he was in the north of Corsica. One keen Cuckoo tracking observer noted that it was possible Sussex and the Tour de France cyclists were travelling in the same direction at the same time - what a good view he will have had if he travelled in a straight line along the eastern side!
Sussex in Sardinia
Positions received at lunch time on 27 June show that Sussex is now in Sardinia, a few km north-east of Tonara. Due to the absence of good quality signals since his last position in France, we are unable to tell whether Sussex made land in Italy, or whether that poor quality signal was a mirror signal and his route took him straight to Sardinia, from where he is now transmitting.
Sussex heads to Italy
Sussex has indeed continued rapidly south moving on from his position in the Hautes-Alpes - as poor quality signals indicated - and heading towards the coast. From here he flew across the sea to the coast of Italy! This location won’t show on the map until better quality transmissions are received. This journey has been around 430 km (265 miles) and he is now close to Follonica, in the Province of Grosseto, (185 km ) 115 miles north-west of Rome. Since his first transmission outside of the UK, the journey through France and over to the west coast of Italy has taken a week.
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