Flyways and Migratory Birds
From Ecological Networks
About a quarter of the 500 bird species breeding in Europe and adjacent Asia spend the winter in Sub-Saharan Africa. The major part of these birds show a negative population trend in the past decades. Recent studies have shown, that the wintering conditions in Africa, notably the Sahel, have several carry-over effects on the breeding birds in Europe. Also it becomes clear that an effective conservation of the internationally operating bird species can only be achieved by a coherent international flyway conservation. Migratory birds require an international approach to conservation, covering breeding areas, fly ways and non-breeding areas. This means that a thorough knowledge must be available on migrations routes, stop-over places and bottle necks in the flyway-network. For example, this knowledge can be used for the sustainable management of deltas, often important staging and wintering sites for migratory birds.
A&W staff has studied, in conjunction with scientists and local experts, the bottlenecks and conservation along migration routes of several bird species, ranging from tropical wintering areas in Africa, to arctic breeding areas on Spitsbergen. We have a broad experience with projects in the Sahel (Mali, Senegal) and coastal West Africa (Mauritania, Senegal, Guinea Bissau, Guinea). A lot of our work has been published in Living on the edge. This work concerns actual field research (bird monitoring, remote sensing, transmitter studies), training and site management (Habitat restoration, Integrated Water Management).