Fermanagh and Omagh District Council encourages residents to record the first call of the cuckoo this Spring 

20th April 2021

Cuckoo

April signals the arrival of the cuckoo back in the district and Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is issuing a challenge to residents to listen out this Spring for the well-known cuckoo’s call.

Cuckoo numbers across the UK and Ireland have halved in the past 20 years, so it’s more important than ever to report cuckoo calls to build a clearer picture of the cuckoo migration patterns and preferred habitats.

The cuckoo is known as a brood parasite as it cunningly never raises its own offspring. Instead, it swoops in and lays eggs in other birds’ nests. The cuckoo chicks hatch first and roll the other eggs out of the nest one by one, tricking their new ‘foster parents’ into caring for them. This tactic allows a female cuckoo to lay up to 22 eggs in one season without having to care for them all.

Cuckoos spend 9 months of the year in Africa before migrating to these shores in Spring. The Cuckoo can be tracked on its 4000-mile trip north by following the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) project by visiting the BTO website.

Cuckoo calls, specifically can be reported to CEDaR at www2.habitas.org.uk/records/submit-cuckoo-record. However, Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is encouraging residents to report not only sightings of cuckoos, but also any species of interest they see, such as red squirrels, moorland birds, bumblebees or butterflies at www2.habitas.org.uk/records/home.

For more information on biodiversity in the local area, please contact the Council’s biodiversity officer by email at biodiversity@fermanaghomagh.com or by telephone on 0300 303 1777