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 23 July 2017

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Cuckoo positions on

Latest News

Victor in North Africa - 17 Jul 2017
A series of locations received from Victor's tag on the evening of 16 July showed that he had left central Spain and was in North Africa, in northwest Algeria, on the northern edge of the Sahara.
PJ crossing the Sahara - 17 Jul 2017
At 19:23 on Friday 14 July we received a location from PJ's tag that showed he was close to the coast of southern France to the west of Toulon. At 20:45 he was 46km (28 miles) to the south of here and over the sea. The last location we received before his tag powered down was at 01:41 on 15 July and he was about half-way through his crossing of the Mediterranean. We next heard from him at 16.14 on 16 July when he was in the middle of the Sahara in southern Algeria. He didn't stop here, and by 08:53 on 17 July he was in Niger and around 500km (350 miles) short of successfully completing his desert crossing. Between Friday evening and early on Monday morning, he travelled 2,900km (1,800 miles) at an average speed of 47kph (30mph). Fingers crossed, when we next hear from his tag he will have completed his desert crossing.
PJ on the move - 13 Jul 2017
PJ has moved south within France and is now now on the border with France and Switzerland, north-west of Geneva and south of Lake Geneva itself. He is currently moving around an area of woodland to the south of Loisin. He is 65km (40 miles) northwest of where the French, Swiss and Italian borders meet in the Alps.   

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

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