PJ the cuckoo returns to Suffolk after record 50,000 mile trip

PJ the cuckoo Credit: BTO

A cuckoo who is being tracked in an effort to understand why the UK has lost half of the birds over the last 20 years has arrived back in Suffolk.

PJ was fitted with a satellite tag in June 2016 in King’s Forest, Suffolk. 

Since he has clocked up more than 50,000 miles, the equivalent of flying around the equator more than twice. 

He is the first satellite-tagged cuckoo to achieve the milestone since the project by the Thetford based British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) began in 2011.

He has crossed the Sahara desert 10 times, as well as navigating the Atlas Mountains in Morocco and the Pyrenees in France and Spain. 

Cuckoos visit the UK in summer to lay their eggs in the nests of other birds, tricking them into rearing their chicks for them.

Aged six-years-old PJ is just one year away from breaking the British longevity record for a ringed cuckoo of six years and 11 months.