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 01 May 2017 to 22 April 2018

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Cuckoo positions on

Latest News

Victor in France - 17 Apr 2018
On 11 April, Victor was embarking on his desert crossing, and midway through Algeria and the tough crossing. By 13 April he had not only completed this, but an ocean crossing aswell, to reach the island of Sardinia, 1985km (1230 miles) from his previous location in Algeria. From Sardinia, he continued on another 610km (380 miles) to France, where a location placed him 60km (40 miles) southwest of Lyon.  He is the third of our Cuckoos to return to Europe. 
PJ second Cuckoo to arrive home - 17 Apr 2018
Just a matter of days after our first Cuckoo returned to the UK, PJ has also made the leap from France and was back in his breeding grounds in King’s Forest, Suffolk area by the morning of the 17 April.  He is earlier than in 2017 when he arrived back on 27 April. 
Selborne arrives back in the UK - 17 Apr 2018
The first of our satellite tagged Cuckoos has successfully made it back to the UK! Tagged in the New Forest in the spring of 2016, Selborne travelled the remaining 500 miles or so from southern France and arrived back to the UK on 14 April, two days later than in 2017. PJ is not far behind in Brittany and could be back any day.

Get involved

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

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