Birds in Libya, new book

This 2014 video is about the birds of Libya.

From BirdLife:

New book release from Libya brings joy to ornithologists

By Obaka Torto, 29 May 2016

Bird conservation and identification in Libya has reached a new milestone with the release of a new guide titled ‘Birds of Libya’. This book is an annotated checklist of the 350 bird species recorded in Libya.

There is information on the geography and climate, a comprehensive list of all the recorded bird species of wild origin, a biogeographical analysis of the breeding species and the place of Libya in the Mediterranean and Palearctic–Afrotropical migration systems. The annotated checklist also provides data on the species’ status, phenology, distribution, habitat, nesting and the origin of migrants and winter visitors.

In recent times, Libya has progressed in the field of bird conservation. One of the major challenges to bird conservation in Libya is the use of weapons for hunting throughout the year, especially during the migration period. Efforts are being made by NGOs such as the Libyan Society for Birds (LSB), to save birds and decrease hunting of migratory birds.

Libyan citizens are just as passionate about nature as those in other countries, and the compilation of this book proves the future is bright for biodiversity in Libya. Birds of Libya/Oiseaux de Libye is translated in both English and French, and is the result of cooperation between ornithologists from Libya, France, Germany and Tunisia.

Birds of Libya is available at:

This report sounds optimistic, and I hope there are enough reasons for that.

However, my guess is that in present Libya birds, birdwatchers and other people all have to be careful not to be killed by the bombs of NATO (which plans to re-start its 2011 war, more blood for more oil, to stop refugees fleeing its wars); the bombs of the Egyptian air force, or of rival air forces. Or the bullets of ISIS and other paramilitary gangs and rival governments fighting each other and killing mostly civilians.

I was in Libya in April 2006. I still think fondly of the little terns flying over Benghazi harbour. And the little egret walking in shallow water off Tripoli. The swift nests in the old city of Tripoli. The goldfinches in the bushes of the eastern mountains. The common bulbul at the archaeological site. The little owl and Senegal turtle dove, next to each other on a fence at another archaeological site, Ptolemais. The migrating woodchat shrikes on telephone wires (and, unfortunately, one dead on the ground). The crested larks along the roads. The stuffed long-legged buzzard at the entrance of the natural history part of the national museum in Tripoli. The exhibit on white stork migration a bit further.

I hope the people of Libya will be able to enjoy all that and much more, without fear of being killed in anyone’s ‘humanitarian‘ or ‘holy’ wars.

6 thoughts on “Birds in Libya, new book

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