Damara tern’s flight from Namibia to Nigeria


This video, recorded in Namibia, is called AEWA – Species Conservation Damara Tern.

From The Namibian daily:

Namibia: Swakop Bird Found On Polluted Nigerian Beach

The Namibian (Windhoek)

3 October 2008
Posted to the web 3 October 2008

Adam Hartman

A damara tern that was ringed by Swakopmund environmentalists Rod and Sigi Braby in 2003 and 2007 was spotted by their daughter, Justine Braby, on the beaches of Lagos, Nigeria, in August.

According to Justine, who is studying towards a master ‘s degree in zoology at the University of Cape Town, she detected the bird on a polluted beach while doing a survey in Lagos, and immediately recognised it as the one ringed by her parents five years ago.

“I was very lucky – that the first bird I saw was so special,” she told The Namibian.

According to her, this ‘Braby tern’ is the only Damara tern with a silver ring on the left leg and two coloured rings on the right.

“This combination of rings was unique to one bird that was trapped on its nest in the Horse’s Graveyard colony near Swakopmund in 2003 by my parents,” she said.

Rod and Sigi used pink and yellow rings that, according to Justine, indicated the year and the colony the bird was trapped in.

She said her parents again found the bird last year, just a couple of metres from its previous nest at the Horse’s Graveyard.

The pink ring had somehow come off, and so received another yellow ring – making it two yellow rings.

“This is the first record of a ringed individual [from Swakopmund] in Nigeria, and proof that the Swakopmund breeders migrate over 4 000 km to spend the winter along the West African coastline,” she said.

She said the find was a very sentimental one for her, and that it was the third bird from Swakopmund found in another country.

In 2006, two birds were spotted in Benin and Gabon.

“The fact that I saw a ringed bird was not much of a coincidence.

The fact that I found a uniquely ringed bird, ringed by my parents in Swakopmund – this was a ridiculous coincidence,” Justine said.

Partnerships strengthen migratory bird conservation in West Africa: here.

5 thoughts on “Damara tern’s flight from Namibia to Nigeria

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