Not something that I have seen in the Australian media
Millions of birds killed worldwide by man-made barriers each year
Bonn/Nairobi, 8 May 2009 – This upcoming weekend (9-10 May 2009),
thousands of people around the world will be taking part in World
Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) events to draw attention to the many man-
made obstacles birds face during their migration.
The central theme for this year's World Migratory Bird Day -"BARRIERS
TO MIGRATION" - aims to highlight the effects man-made structures such
as wind turbines, communication masts, tall buildings and windows,
power lines and fences have on migratory birds.
During migration birds face a number of natural obstacles such as
expanding deserts, seas, huge mountains and other natural barriers.
Yet, next to these natural barriers, birds are increasingly being
confronted with man-made barriers on their journeys.
These man-made structures can not only disturb the migratory movements
of birds, but it is estimated that bird-strike due to collisions with
man-made structures is responsible for the deaths of many millions of
birds worldwide each year.
Among the affected bird species are abundant as well as rare and
endangered species. Man-made barriers are believed to be a growing
threat and are likely to be a significant contributor to the decline
in many populations, especially those of scarcer, more vulnerable bird
"Hundreds and thousands of migratory birds, including many that are
protected under international wildlife treaties such as the African-
Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Agreement (AEWA), are killed in growing
numbers by man-made barriers. Some of these cases could quite easily
be avoided by introducing technical measures for reducing this often
avoidable cause of destruction" said Bert Lenten, Executive Secretary
of AEWA and initiator of the World Migratory Bird Day campaign.
However, each year the number of wind turbines, power lines,
skyscraping radio, TV and cell phone transmission masts, reflecting
plate glass windows, tall buildings and other structures continues to
grow, often without consideration of avoidance and mitigation measures
known to reduce avian mortality through collisions with these
In addition to a number of known mitigation measures specific to each
type of structure, particularly the location and placement of
structures such as wind farms and power lines along major migratory
routes or near areas regularly used by large numbers of feeding,
breeding or roosting birds, can dramatically affect the likelihood of
collisions. Placement of structures along important wetlands, river
valleys and in coastal areas where large numbers of migratory birds
congregate, are also likely to increase the risk to migratory birds.
"Although man-made barriers represent an increasing problem for
migratory birds worldwide, so far little attention has been given to
possible solutions. My strong hope is that World Migratory Bird Day
will help raise awareness of these barriers and that action will be
taken to reduce the impact of some of these man-made structures on
migratory birds" said Bert Lenten.
Dedicated people and organisations around the world will be using
World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) this upcoming weekend to conduct
events, which will help draw attention to the impact of man-made
barriers on migratory birds. Over one hundred separate events in 44
countries have already been registered on the WMBD website so far:
Notes to Editors
World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD)
World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) is a global initiative devoted to
celebrating migratory birds and for promoting their conservation
worldwide. This year WMBD will take place on the weekend of 9-10 May
and its central theme will be 'Barriers to migration.'
World Migratory Bird Day is being organised by the African-Eurasian
Migratory Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) and the Convention on Migratory
Species (CMS) – two international wildlife treaties administered by
the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and other partners.
People and dedicated organisations around the world will be using the
event to draw attention to man-made barriers and their impact on
migratory birds. Over one hundred separate events in 44 countries have
already been registered on the WMBD website so far (see: www.worldmigratorybirdday.org
). Activities to mark WMBD include bird festivals and bird watching
trips, public discussions, exhibitions, presentations, bird rallies
and other educational and public events.
For more information please see: www.worldmigratorybirdday.org
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