E-groups: Expedition Birding and Birding Peru

Subject: E-groups: Expedition Birding and Birding Peru
From: Gunnar Engblom <>
Date: Mon, 10 Dec 2001 16:04:31 -0800 (PST)
Dear all
John van der Woude's web-page
is a delight for the exploring birder, giving many
hints to find the endemic and the truly rare birds. In
line with this I have started two new e-groups
interest to world birders and birders interested in
the neotropics.
Expedition Birding - Birders for supporting
conservation of threatened birds of the world.
Subscribe by sending an empty mail to

A couple months ago, I sent out on various
list-servers, the ideas behind the concept of
Expedition Birding. In short the birds are valuated
against their classification in BirdLife
Internationals ?Threatened Birds of the World? and
Endemic Bird Areas.  There is already a competive
ingredient in the list-keeping of most birders, if not
to compare with other birders, at least for one?s own

Non-birders and non-listers often critisize the
listers for being ?stamp-collectors?. It does not
contribute much to the conservation of the birds, and
sometimes the listers even threaten the well-being ot
the same birds, especially if the bird is needed on a
national or county/state list.

Most birders are mostly interested in getting as many
species as possible on a birding holiday to a new
country and continues to follow the same established
routes that are well known. Once in a while, you come
across a bird which is endemic to the region or a bird
which is generally rare or threatened and this is
naturally a special treat that one feels quite content
of. However, it is still worth just ?1? on your

There has been some attempts to give value to the
bird-observertions, but none has seriously been put in
practice by the majority of the bird community. Many
argue: ?Why put scores on the birds? The bird is
interesting in any context. Don´t make a competition
out this wonderful hobby!?

While I personally feel the enjoyment of birdwatching
without at all being competive, I feel that the
competiveness of some birders can be a tremendous
asset, if these birders started to get off the beaten
track to ?hunt? down some of the rarest birds on
earth. Most threatened birds are rare because they
have no economic value for the people living in the
area. Therefor, forest and scrub is being cleared. If
birders started taking interest in visiting the site
of a rare bird, the locals would have an incentive to
protect the habitat. Most of the times the most
threatened birds are actually found outside protected
areas, and such an interest of the birdwatchers could
well be the difference to their survival.

I am presently typing down all the threatened birds
from the newly published BirdLife International
publication ?Threatened Birds of the World? and
combining this list with another BirdLife
International publication ?Endemic Bird Areas?. I have
had help of Dave Geale and Pat O?Donnel, but I need
more help. Currently I am dealing with the antbirds. I
can finish the Suboscines myself with only Tyrants,
Cotingas and Manakins left. If you have both of these
books you can volunteer to do a section. Please
contact me directly or through the e-group when you
sign up

These are the groups I need help with:
Tanagers-New World Warblers- Hawaiian Honeycreepers,
New World Orioles

It is put into an Excel-file. This file will be widely
available before Christmas. I´ll detail the specifics
for the people that sign up.

The score system works briefly as follows:
1 point: Endemic Bird Area (Statterfield et al)
species and Near Threatened species regardless if they
are endemic or not. Simple observation of Data
Deficient birds.
2 points: Red Data Book - Vulnerable
3 points: RDB - Endangered
4 points: RDB - Critically Threatened or providing
data for Data Deficient birds that changes their
status in forth coming Red Data Book volumes.
5 points: being member of the second to fifth
expeditions after the discovery of new species,
thought to be extinct species, or species without
sightings the last 50 years. The next few expeditions
to see the bird will also give 5 points if realized
the same year as the fith. This is to facilitate the
planning for Expedition Birders and make the effort
worth while.
6 points discovery of a new species, rediscovery of a
thought to be extinct species or species without
sightings the last 50 years.

* You can only count your points while the bird is
extant. Birds extinct in the wild does not count! This
means that every birder getting a 4 point bird should
do something to ensure its survival. 

* Members of particular expeditions and surveys of
birds finding out that the bird of study should
actually be considered more threatened than the
current treatment can count the bird with a higher
score when the treatment has been done by BirdLife

* You score when your sighting is. I.e a recent
upgraded (more threatened species can not be counted
as the higher score), but rather as the score of the
date of sighting.

* For observations 1994-october 2000 see "Birds to
watch 2" 1994). BirdLife International.

* Observations made prior to 1994: see Birds to Watch
(1988). International Council for Bird Conservation.
Technical Publication No. 8. But categories of Birds
to Watch 2 applies (CR, EN, VU). If not treated within
RDB in Birds to Watch 2, then the bird is classified
as VU (2 points). 

Sounds complicated? Well, once the Excel file is done
it will be quite easy to apply. In the meantime please
respond by signing up on the Expedition Birding
 or send me
a mail with queries.


This is another e-group for everyone interested in the
birds of Peru. The Hotline to birdwatching in Peru.
Trip reports, recent sightings, travel tips , travel
partners, range extentions, identification help, etc.
The discussion is in English, but Spanish postings are
allowed. One of the principle objectives is to create
an interim forum for departamental range extentions,
occurance of rare migrants, and first records for the
country. This way such records will be e-documented,
to be available for future record committee.

Many Saludos

Gunnar Engblom

Gunnar Engblom-Lima, Peru. Birdwatching in S. America.
tele/fax +51 (0)1 476 50 16 cel: 964 89 46/9007886 
Kolibri Expeditions-Expediton Birding to the Endemic
and Threatened Birds.
Marvelous Spatuletail Tours-Spectacular Birding and
Great Comfort.
Webpage:  Email:
Birding Peru e-group:
   The Hotline to
birdwatching in Peru. Trip reports, recent sightings,
travel tips , travel partners, range extentions,
identification help, etc.

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