World Bird News August 2012

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Don’t miss EuroBirdwatch!

EuroBirdwatch – BirdLife’s annual birdwatching event in Europe and Central Asia – works to raise awareness of issues relating to bird migration and promotes efforts to save threatened bird species and their habitats. This year’s EuroBirdwatch will take place on the weekend of 6-7 October 2012.

From its beginning in 1993, BirdLife national Partners have invited the public every year on the first weekend in October to explore the beauty of birds, and especially to experience the magic of bird migration. The wide variety of events organised across the European continent include birdwatching excursions, special birdwatching events on organic farms, contests for children to identify birds by their song, bird fairs, trips to watch birds in national parks and many more activities.

In 2011, the Central-Asian countries joined in this unique event, making last year the largest ever EuroBirdwatch. BirdLife Partners and affiliated organisations from 37 European and Central Asian countries participated, organising a grand total of 2,200 different events. Almost five million birds of different species were counted. Starling, Little Bunting and Crane were the top three species.

EuroBirdwatch primarily aims to encourage as many people as possible to go birdwatching over one weekend and to record sightings of as many bird species as possible. Secondly, it provides a great opportunity for bird lovers to meet and practice birdwatching.

From the observation stands, the numbers of birds seen and of people participating are reported to the national centre for BirdLife and from there to the European Centre, which is run by CSO (BirdLife Partner in the Czech Republic).

How to participate: book your time for the weekend 6-7 October. Find your national EuroBirdwatch coordinator – the BirdLife Partner in your country. Choose the event and enjoy birdwatching!

Carnaby’s numbers still down

Carnaby’s numbers still down

BirdLife Australia’s (BirdLife Partner) 2012 Great Cocky Count has found that numbers of Endangered Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoo in the Perth Region are still lower than reported in 2010.

The Great Cocky Count, organised by BirdLife Australia in partnership with the Department of Environment and Conservation, counts as many Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos as possible on a single night each year in April. This year’s count was at sunset on 15 April.

BirdLife Australia’s WA Program Manager, Cheryl Gole, said, “The latest results show a 40 per cent decrease since 2010 in the number of Carnaby’s counted at night roosts in the Swan Region, which includes the Perth metropolitan area. The minimum population size in the Swan Region was only 4000 Carnaby’s this year, similar to 2011, compared to 6700 in 2010. This suggests that numbers are still down in the region.”

The Swan Region provides critical winter feeding habitat for northern and western populations of the cockatoos. The 2012 count shows there is a decrease in the number of active roosts south of the Swan River.

“While all the reasons for the decreased number of Carnaby’s are not clear, habitat clearance has to be an important factor,” said Ms Gole. Pressure on cockatoo habitat in the Perth and Peel Region will increase because of our rapidly growing population and increasing housing requirements. BirdLife Australia believes increasing habitat clearance is the greatest threat to the species and that the remaining cockatoo habitat in the Perth and Peel Region is critical for the survival of Carnaby’s and must be protected.

“The Great Cocky Count is important as it allows us to monitor what is happening with the cockatoos. We don’t have long-term information yet and it is imperative that we continue the counts to understand the changes we are seeing”.

Tamara Kabat, the Count’s organiser, said, “The Great Cocky Count is a fantastic community-driven event. Monitoring over 200 sites on a single night across south-west WA can’t be done without dedicated volunteers. The number of people willing to put up their hands to count the much-loved cockatoos this year was overwhelming”.

“Many people are looking for ways they can help protect the cockatoos. Taking part in surveys such as the Great Cocky Count is just one way they can help. New roost sites have been reported across south-west Australia, including one outside Esperance of over 1000 cockatoos. However, we know there are more sites out there, and we’re asking everyone to tell us about night-time roost locations for all cockatoos”, she said.

The Birder's Market | Resource | Bird news for Britain / Rest of the World | World Bird News | World Bird News 2012 |  World Bird News August 2012

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