Three Cuckoos are now safely across the desert, including Meavy, who had grounded and stayed in the same area for a few days. He is now in north Benin while Dudley is in Nigeria and Whortle is further to the east in Sudan.
On Saturday 12 July transmissions were received from both Dudley and Whortle to show they had arrived in Africa.
Dudley has cut across to Africa, from his location in Spain to Niger. Whortle, however, has taken a completely different route to last year - travelling via Italy towards Libya/Egypt! This is a real surprise as last year he went west via Spain to western Africa and then to Niger. Over 4,000km (2,500 miles) separate the two locations within Africa! How will this complete change in route affect the rest of his journey and what are the reasons behind this dramatic difference? In previous years, while we have seen some minor changes, routes have remained relatively similar. It shows that the more we learn about Cuckoos, and the possible reasons for their declining populations, the more questions are raised!
Dudley and Whortle join Meavy, the first Cuckoo to arrive in Africa, who had grounded in the Algerian desert. Since then he has continued south to Niger but has still yet to complete his desert crossing, indicating he may be struggling.
From France, via Corsica, Ash appears to now be in Italy. He joins Hennah, who had also been in France and perched in the Pyrenees close to the France/Spain border but who also recently changed direction and headed to Italy to take this more easterly route. Whortle, Peter, Waller, and Livingstone are all also currently in Italy.
With three un-named birds left we are letting you choose what to name one of our Sherwood Cuckoos! Anyone who sponsors a Cuckoo before the end of June will be entered in to a draw. We’ll then pick one entry at random and will contact the winner who can then suggest a suitable name*. Find out how you could name a Cuckoo.
Emsworthy has travelled over the border from France to join Whortle, Livingstone and Peter in Italy. Livingstone and Peter are in the Po Valley, an area that the project has shown to be important to many of our Cuckoos, while Whortle and Emsworthy are currently close to the valley edge.
Emsworthy's move this year, from France along and into Italy, looks remarkably similiar to Whortle's movement last year, just before he suprised us by retreating back to France and then down through Spain to Africa. This year Whortle has headed straight to Italy and not stopped in France as far as we can tell. Will he head through Spain as last year or make the flight to Africa directly from Italy? Which route will fellow Devon Cuckoo Emsworthy take?