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Endangered Cuckoo joins the Red List


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The Cuckoo has joined the Red List as one of the most endangered birds in the world with a forty percent decline over the last fifteen years. The bird, whose distinctive call is ofte seen as the first signal of the arrival of spring, joins the Herring Gull, Ruff, Redwing, Hen Harrier, Sparrow, Marsh Warbler, Skylark, Songthrush and Turtle Dove on the 1227 long list which includes  one in eight of the world’s bird species with 192 classified as “critically endangered” includng vultures, ibis and eagles. But it’s the species in the “near threatened” category which add another alarming few hundred to the list, including the American Chimney Swift and the bateleur and martial eagles of Africa. One of the puzzling aspects of the cuckoo’s decline is that they are adaptable bird, nesting in a variety of locations in the United Kingdom and are famous for depositing their eggs in other bird’s nests leaving the surrogate parents to bring up their offspring, Their habit of overwintering in Africa may be a cause of population delcine as droughts caused by global warming make for a far harsher environment with reduced food and water.