As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Britain's most famous Cuckoo has dropped off the radar

The satellite-tagged Cuckoo named Chris after wildlife presenter Chris Packham, seems to be missing in action the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) reported last week.

Chris, who was fitted with a satellite-tag in 2011, has been providing scientists with ground-breaking information on Cuckoo migration for longer than any of their other tagged cuckoos.

This year he left Britain on 4th July on his annual migration to Africa, arriving at his usual stop-over site in the Po valley, northern Italy on 16th July.

On arrival however, Chris will have faced a tough time because the region has been experiencing its worst drought in years.

The lack of rain is likely to have limited vegetation growth and reduced the availability of caterpillars, the preferred food of Chris and other Cuckoos, which is bad news for those British Cuckoos who use this area to fatten up.

They need this period of stocking up their resources to give them the energy to make a successful crossing of the Sahara Desert.

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