Wot, no cuckoo?

Most years we’ve heard its call, but not this one. The RSPB says its numbers are declining and has put it on its Red List.

It’s too quiet in the forest.
It’s Spring, and nothing’s stirred.
Something’s missing in the forest –
It’s the Spring-announcing bird.

The females are all rascals.
They are scallywags, and rotters.
They lay their eggs in others’ nests
So, when they hatch, they’re squatters.

And then things get quite nasty:
The squatters take possession,
Evicting other eggs and chicks
With Cuculidae aggression.

So this year there’s no cuckoo –
The forest birds are glad!
But, though the cuckoo’s such a thug,
I feel a little sad . . .

[Image of female cuckoo: RSPB]
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