My first cuckoo.......

vbc

Guest
Location
Bristol
.......not just of the year but the first one I've heard for several years.

Yesterday at Ashton Court near Bristol which will be familiar to MTBers. Just a pity that so many people were walking/riding/running by with their iPod ear phones in, missing the glory of springtime bird song.

Oh well....their loss.
 

rich p

ridiculous old lush
Location
Brighton
You don't hear many these days. I heard one in the Netherlands but not here. I think I remember reading that their preferred hosts were a flycatcher (pied or spotted) and were in decline.
 

longers

Veteran
I heard one last year and that was the first for years, can't remember where I was.

There was a little exhibition by a local museum of their wildlife collection dating back many years. One case had twenty or more birds nests of different species and each had a cuckoo egg in. No wonder you don't hear so many of them!
 

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
Bloody hell !!!!
Driving near Nottingham yesterday and i saw a bird perched...wassat !!!! i thought, not a dove or pigeon, hawk maybe but grey backed...i spent a while thinking what it was....never thought of a cuckoo.
Maybe....

On the subject, cuckoos are moderately common round here, always hear them in Ferry Meadows country park...lots of lakes and reedbeds, a favourite for cuckoos.
 

Soltydog

Legendary Member
Location
near Hornsea
biggs682 said:
we had our first hearing this week to , never seen one yet
I hear them most years, heard my first this year the other day whilst out on the bike, but only seen them one year. About 2 or 3 years ago we had a pair flying around our house for a few days & then a week or 2 later on holiday in Norfolk saw another :wacko:
 

ASC1951

Guru
Location
Yorkshire
rich p said:
I think I remember reading that their preferred hosts were a flycatcher (pied or spotted) and were in decline.
Almost endangered, now.

Very clever birds, cuckoos. Not only do they supplant the eggs of several species of bird, but each female cuckoo is able to pick a host female whose egg markings most closely match her own.
 

longers

Veteran
The eggs I saw were very well matched to the clutches, and they were collected a very long time ago in case that wasn't clear.
 

rich p

ridiculous old lush
Location
Brighton
I wonder what happens when the nest owner returns to find the lady cuckoo about to drop one of her own?
The cuckoo is quite a bit larger than the host.
 

Glow worm

Guru
Location
Near Newmarket
None here yet. Normally hear them around now so hopefully won't be long. On a similar note- having a day off today and I just heard a couple of turtle doves while pottering around on the Fen (between Horningsea and Quy for any locals).
 

gbb

Legendary Member
Location
Peterborough
Sat having dinner late yesterday afternoon, back door open....what do i hear ? Cuckoo :tongue:


The only times i've actually seen them is when you're actually looking for them...binoculars and bird hides in the right location and you're there at the right time. Hear the cuckoo then start scanning the trees etc. Maybe only seen 3 cuckoos in my life !!!
 

ASC1951

Guru
Location
Yorkshire
I wonder what happens when the nest owner returns to find the lady cuckoo about to drop one of her own?
It's a while since I saw this particular documentary, but IIRC the cuckoo pair hide in cover a few yards away, the male cuckoo chases the host female around the field a bit and makes sure his mate has plenty of time. Just in case the host female can count, the female cuckoo also tips one of the host eggs out of the nest.
 
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