23rd November 2019

Our team of volunteers is about to assemble to try to catch seven more Pacific Golden Plover so we can fit them with satellite tags and hopefully fill in all the blanks in what we know about their life cycle. So it seems appropriate that today the last of the three birds we caught last time to be still broadcasting, the indomitable JoJo, has sent another message from the same field on Tongatapu just south of the town of Vaini where he’s been for the past few weeks. I’d like to think it was a message of good luck. But knowing those birds, as we have come to do, it is more likely to be a raspberry.

We do have some people on Tonga with an interest in conservation who have offered to go out looking for JoJo but haven’t heard anything back which presumably means they haven’t found him. So, if you have any contacts in Tonga you might be able to talk into going to look for this amazing bird it would be hugely helpful.

Meanwhile, Pacific Golden Plovers continue to arrive – over 50 at our two main roosting sites and rising – so there are plenty of birds for us to catch . . . if they cooperate.

They don’t reach their peak numbers until the end of the year so there’s still plenty of time for JoJo, Amanda and Wee Jimmy to return. We’ve got watchers all round the coast keeping an eye out for golden birds with bling.

Please cross your fingers, legs and eyes that the catching goes well and that at least one of our bold trio is spotted flashing his colourful bands and sporty aerial on the Firth of Thames.

To see all the details of their journey and the latest spots they’ve checked in at, explore on your own, you can download the latest Google Earth files here.

Go to the Where’s Goldie? main Pacific Golden Plover Project page for all the project information.

JoJo Broadcasting from Tonga