A funny momentum in a Piping Plover family was captured by Matt Filosa. ((Image was legally embedded via the photographer’s Flickr photostream with the link to the original image)
… at least at some part of the world. 6th of September is the celebration of World Shorebirds Day. It’s been a fantastic journey since this special day was launched. We aimed to nominate a day for shorebirds and those who work on or for shorebirds, and ever since, 6 September is the day when we celebrate.
It cannot be highlighted enough that shorebird populations around the world are facing extremely difficult times through their whole life cycle. We have just recorded the hottest Summer in the Northern Hemisphere for more than 120,000 years and climate change is inarguably taking its toll. Drought, vegetation change at breeding habitats, food availability and quality, hunting, extreme storms, predation, invasive species, land reclamation, human disturbance and many other factors lead to sharply falling shorebird populations, some below the sustainable level.
African Oystercatcher is feeding in waves in South Africa. @ Vittorio Ricci (Image was legally embedded via the photographer’s Flickr photostream with the link to the original image)
World Shorebirds Day’s role, if you like, is not to launch yet another conservation project but rather to highlight conservation challenges and successes. Our social media channels have been very busy in the last 12 months and we are very proud of every effort made to protect shorebirds. We got sad and worrying news but we also got encouraging and positive ones through the year. Whether it is a beach nesting bird stewardship program, a migratory connectivity research project or a land transformation to shorebird breeding habitat, they are efforts, important ones. It is also an important effort if we just go out birdwatching and submitting data in a structured way into eBird, BirdTrack or any other database. Our data will be used for conservation and scientific purposes. Data is knowledge and for making the right decision we have to provide and work with accurate data. With the Global Shorebird Counting Program, we aimed to encourage birdwatchers to do it on a regular basis and it seems, we have succeeded.
Now, let’s celebrate the tirelessly working shorebird guardians and the unique shorebirds around the world, among them the curlews and the ‘Shorebird of the Year‘, the Whimbrel.
The Eurasian Curlew has been assessed as Near Threatened globally. @ Sindri Skúlason (Image was legally embedded via the photographer’s Flickr photostream with the link to the original image)