Tracking Cuckoos to Africa... and back again

We’ve lost over half the number of Cuckoos in the UK over the last 20 years.

Since 2011 we’ve been satellite-tracking Cuckoos to find out why. We’ve learned lots of vital information which could help us to understand our Cuckoos -  such as how the different routes taken are linked to declines, and some of the pressures they face whilst on migration. 

But there is still more to discover. We now need to look more closely at how dependent they are on, and how much their migration is linked, to the drought-busting rains of the weather frontal system known as the Inter Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ) as they move out of the Congo rainforest and begin to head back to the UK via West Africa.

This project wouldn't have been possible without the amazing support from funders and sponsors. Read more about the project and find out how you can get involved.

We have been able to share our expertise around tracking Cuckoos with other international studies, such as the Beijing Cuckoo Project.

Follow our Cuckoos as they move to and from Africa.


Cuckoo movements from 23 May 2017 to 19 September 2017

View routes starting..
Cuckoo positions on

Latest News

Selborne in Nigeria - 20 Sep 2017
Selborne has traveled 480km (almost 300 miles) south east  from his last postition in Benin and is now in Nigeria.  This is almost exactly on schedule as per 2016. Last year he arrived in Nigeria on 23 September, remaining here until early October when he moved on to Equatorial Guinea briefly and then Gabon. 
Where are Nicholas and Kidman? - 06 Sep 2017
Nicholas and Kidmans' tags both last sent transmissions from Italy in July. However nothing has been received since. It seems that the tags aren't charging so we do not know if they remain in Italy or have moved on. Peckham is still as far north as Belgium so it could be that Nicholas and Kidman have also yet to move further south.  At this stage we have nothing to suggest that anything has happened to these Cuckoos and we hope to hear from them again.
PJ moves north - 05 Sep 2017
PJ has moved 155km (95 miles) north from Nigeria into Niger, back to the area he was in around the middle of July. 

Get involved

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

Information on this page is only for illustrative purposes and cannot be used without our permission © British Trust for Ornithology.