Cuckoos' migration pattern mapped – University of Copenhagen

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09 January 2014

Cuckoos' migration pattern mapped

How birds find their way on the migration route is one of the big questions in science.  The migration of the cuckoo has now been mapped in details for the very first time using satellite technology and the results are surprising.

The bird, which is brought up by other birds, do not have the opportunity to learn the migration route from its parents, and so far it was assumed that it orientates itself with an internal clock and compass strategy during the migration. However, the new study reveals a migratory pattern too complex to be explained by the clock and compass strategy.

Postdoc Mikkel Willemoes Kristensen and Associate Professor Kasper Thorup from CMEC is behind the study together with international partners from Lund's Univeristy and the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology in Germany.

The study is published in PLOS ONE

Link to article: http://dx.plos.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0083515

The full press release is available in Danish