Skip to main content


Cuckoo sponsors Steve and Amy chose the name Ellis "after our little boy who we hope will get to hear cuckoos when he grows up - along with the next generation of nature lovers".

Ellis the Cuckoo
Monday, May 17, 2021 - 22:00
Tagging Location:
Loch Arklet, Perthshire, Scotland
Age when found:
Satellite Tag No.:
Wing Length (mm):

Cuckoo sponsor badge

Ellis's journey from 17 May 2021 to 24 July 2021

Ellis's position on
Show marker
Show route

Ellis's movements

12 Jul 2021 - Ellis crosses into Nigeria

Ellis has continued south another 115km (72 miles) and is now just over the border in northern Nigeria, 22km (13 miles) east of the town of Daura.  The weather in this area at the moment is moderate rain with a maximum temperature of 33°c and minimum temperature of 26°c. Hopefully Ellis is finding plenty of food to refuel after his desert crossing. 

10 Jul 2021 - Ellis completes his desert crossing

At 21:56 on Thursday evening Ellis was in northern Libya, by 08:40 Friday morning he was 840 km (520 miles) further south, crossing the Sahara in north east Niger. The latest updates received this morning (Saturday 10 July) show that he has now reached southern Niger and is c100km north of Zinder, the third largest city in Niger. In flying from northern Libya to southern Niger he has covered an amazing 1,806 km (1,120 miles) over the course of approximately 41 hours, which means he was traveling at an average speed of around 27mph. He was helped along by some light tail winds. It is warm and dry in this area today but Ellis is arriving in the Sahel (the semi-arid region of Africa separating the Sahara Desert to the north and tropical savannas to the south), just in time for the start of the rainy season. 

09 Jul 2021 - Ellis is in Africa

Not only has Ellis crossed into Africa, but he is crossing the Sahara! At 09:16 on Wednesday morning, Ellis was still near Rome but by 17:39 on Thursday he had flown 1,457 km (907 miles) south over the Mediterranean and was in or over Libya. He didn't stop there though and the latest update we received from his tag at 08:43 this morning (Friday 9 July) showed that he had reached Niger. He was in the far north east of Niger, just west of the Tibesti mountains. Hopefully when we next hear from Ellis he will have successfully conquered the Sahara.

08 Jul 2021 - Ellis heads for Rome

Ellis has flown a further 500km (311 miles) south from his last location near Lake Como in northern Italy, towards Rome. By 05:45 yesterday morning he was near Lake Bracciano and by 06:30 he had settled in the countryside between Sacrofano and Monte Lungo, about 25 kilometers north of Rome. Attenborough is still a whisker further south of Ellis.

05 Jul 2021 - Ellis flies to Italy via Germany and Switzerland

Cuckoo Ellis was still in the Netherlands late on Friday evening but by 22:46 last night he had flown 542 km (336 miles) south and was just south of Strasbourg and close to the city of Offenburg in Germany. By 3am this morning he was crossing the Alps in Switzerland and by 5am he was in the mountains above the city of Colico on the shores of Lake Como in northern Italy. 

Past updates from Ellis

Get involved

Find out how you can support the project, or contact us directly for further details -

Donate to help us run the Cuckoo Tracking project.

Sponsor an individual cuckoo with a monthly Direct Debit or make a one-off donation.

Information on this page is for illustrative purposes only and should not be reproduced without permission
© British Trust for Ornithology.