Six of our transmitter swans have reached Russia and are now more than half way into their journey to the arctic! Daisy Clarke, Hope and pair BEWI17 and BEWI20 have all settled around Lake Ladoga, Andres remains on Lake Ilmen while Pola has reached another lake a little further east. It will now be a case of sitting out any poor weather and making the most of good, clear conditions to press onwards. The swans have to be very opportunistic as weather conditions can change very quickly as they move north.
The beauty of the tracking technology is the detailed information we are able to gather about the swans phenomenal journey. We are learning something new every day, whether it be a surprising detour, an unusual stopping off site or an unlikely meeting.
We have been closely watching the routes of Andres and Daisy Clarke who were caught in different winters and at different sites on the Ouse Washes in Norfolk. As far as we know, they are unrelated and embarked on very different paths with Daisy taking a more northerly route via Denmark and Sweden and Andres taking a more traditional route through the Baltic states. Cold weather seemingly encouraged Daisy to leave Estonia and head back to Latvia where she spent time in the vicinity of Andres. Both birds then flew independently to Lake Peipsi which straddles the Estonian and Russian border, intriguingly arriving at similar times.
As we were pondering whether this series of events constituted a coincidence or represented a developing ‘friendship’, Andres and Daisy then took off for their next leg, again independently, and again, arriving at a spot on Lake Ilmen in Russia very close to one another. This morning they separated again as Daisy headed for Lake Ladoga, leaving Andres behind. I wonder where and when this unlikely pair will meet again?