By Chris Heward, GWCT Wetlands Assistant
Phynodderee, a woodcock tagged on the Isle of Man, has started her autumn migration. The last time we reported on Phynodderee she was taking a break on the Swedish island of Gotland in the middle of the Baltic.
Our satellite-tagged woodcock tend to migrate in long-bursts of flight, covering 600 to 1100 km, followed by a period of rest. The rest areas that the birds use, known as stop-overs, are important to migrating woodcock and we have some evidence to suggest that they can be faithful to the same favoured stop-overs year after year.
Stops may last just a couple of days, particularly if bad weather forces the birds to keep moving, but are typically around ten days. Phynodderee, however, has been on Gotland for at least three weeks - first transmitting from the island on the 26th October.
It's not surprising that Phynodderee is taking it easy. The weather on Gotland isn't particularly cold yet, so she's probably taking the opportunity to fatten up for the next leg of her journey.
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