UV reaches Africa. In style!

Yesterday afternoon UV left Portugal for Africa. All times are UTC.

UV crossing to Africa courtesy Paul Wildlifewriter

UV crossing to Africa
courtesy Paul Wildlifewriter

It is fascinating to see UV arrive at the same point in the Atlantic Ocean he was at in 2014 – at night this time – then stay very close to that track. So close that he arrived just 14.2 km away from his landfall in 2014.

UV makes landfall west of the River Draa, the longest in Morocco courtesy Paul Wildlifewriter

UV makes landfall west of the River Draa, the longest in Morocco
courtesy Paul Wildlifewriter

By the last fix today at 12.56 UTC UV had been flying for over 25 hours excluding one short stop. He had flown 1180 km since setting off, 989 km of which were over the sea. His average speed over the sea was 50.4 kph, or 31.4 mph. This is yet another proof that long-distance routes over open water can be much more energy-efficient (or faster, which amounts to the same thing) than the same distance travelled over land.

The weather forecast (courtesy Paul) is good for onward travel.

There will be another post early tomorrow with a bit more detail on UV’s journey.

Safe travelling and roosting, UV, heading south through the desert.

This entry was posted in Abroad, Blue UV, Migration, Osprey updates and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to UV reaches Africa. In style!

  1. JW4926 says:

    So pleased to hear the boy is safe and well – Thank you Joanna. His strength amazes me – his flight from Portugal to Africa is the same as him flying from John o’Groats to Paignton in one swoop! … Stay safe and well UV …..

  2. Even by osprey standards, UV’s landfall this morning is a remarkable feat of navigation. We think that birds (and many other creatures) use a positional / directional method known a “time-compensated sun compass”. As the name implies, this requires the animal to have a sense of the passage of time (because the sun and other celestial bodies change their apparent angle in the sky as the Earth rotates.) UV’s flight tells us how accurate that internal circadian “clock” must be. To get within 15 km of the target after a flight of almost 1000 km – much of it at night – requires the time element to be estimated correctly within about thirty seconds.


  3. Tiger Mozone says:

    A wonderful blog for a wonderful ospreys. Your maps and analysis are excellent. Congratulation on such cutting edge work.

  4. Cirrus says:

    I’m still fingers crossed until UV arrives somewhere more verdant . Many thanks fo Paul for all the terrific maps and explanations of the wonders of migration

    • joannadailey says:

      UV should have plenty of reserves, Cirrus, having just spent nearly a fortnight stocking up on Portuguese fish!

  5. Vivien Finn says:

    Delighted to know UV has safely reached Africa and in style, what a remarkable journey. Thank you Joanna for the good news. Paul we are learning so much from the knowledge you continue to share with us, thank you. Keep flying safe UV.

  6. Well done UV, a brilliant journey and safely to Africa.

  7. thegreatgeraldo says:

    Wonder if UV followed the coast south after making landfall in Morocco to find a landmark from his last (& first!) migration?

    • joannadailey says:

      Apologies for the delay in replying to the question. UV would have recognised the general area as he approached the coast so wouldn’t have needed to follow the coast. As you may have seen in later blogs he diverged from his 2014 route then drew closer before heading direct to Senegal, rather than stopover at Cintra again.

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