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|About||Going where the cuckoos go...|
Following the migration path of western yellow-billed cuckoos (Coccyzus americanus occidentalis) from southwestern USA to the Gran Chaco region of South America, and back!
Limited knowledge of areas used by birds during migration - typically the most dangerous period for Neotripical migrants - prevents full life-cycle protection for many threatened species. Previous migration data on western yellow-billed cuckoos (a federally threatened distinct population segment) collected via light-level geolocation has averaged >200 km error per point. Determining actual locations via GPS will help to identify habitats used and their conservation status.
Between 2014 and 2015, as part of a long-term monitoring project under the Lower Colorado River Multi-Species Conservation Program (lcrmscp.gov), we attached Lotek Pinpoint-10 GPS tags to 14 western yellow-billed cuckoos. We retrieved GPS tags from five of them in 2015 and 2016, and are setting off on a road trip to follow their ‘tracks’. We are also checking out historical and recent eBird sightings of cuckoos along the way, starting in Baja California.