White-tailed lapwing video

This is a white-tailed lapwing video. This species nests in Asia, and winters in India and Africa.

First North African Ornithology Congress

First North African Ornithology Congress poster

From North African Birds blog today:

First North African Congress of Ornithology: call for papers

The Laboratory of Applied Zoology and Animal Ecophysiology of the University of Béjaia (Algeria) is organising the First North African Congress of Ornithology and the 4th International Colloquium of Algerian Ornithology from 24 to 26 October 2017 at the University of Béjaia. …


After the successful editions of Batna (2006), Oum El-Bouaghi (2012) and Guelma (2014). The Laboratory of Applied Zoology and Animal Ecophysiology of the Bejaia University (Algeria), suggests organizing the fourth edition of the International Colloquium of Algerian Ornithology. This year, and given the enthusiasm of our Maghrebian colleagues for the previous meetings, a North African dimension is given to this scientific event, with the organization for the first time on a regional level of the First North African Congress of Ornithology. The theme held this year, for both events; “The Birds of North Africa in front of Global Change”. The two meetings will certainly provide an opportunity to [make] a network of Maghreb ornithologists and … to create a scientific journal dealing with the Birds of North Africa.

Retained themes:

Birds of North Africa in front of Global Change

Status and biogeography of North African avifauna

Ecology and Biology of the birds of the Desert and Saharan Regions

Conservation of wetlands and water birds in northern Africa

Ecology and biology of forest avifauna

Birds of the Atlantic and the Mediterranean coasts

Save West Africa’s seabirds

This video says about itself:

12 July 2011

You’ve never seen so many seabirds in one place! A tiny island off the South African coast is the location of one of the biggest gannet colonies on earth! Watch the birds take flight in this HD video.

From BirdLife:

Protecting the majestic seabirds of West Africa

By Justine Dossa, Alcyon Project Manager, 26 Jan 2017

Alcyon? It is, in fact, a legend borrowed from Greek mythology. Alcyon is a fabulous seabird, with plaintive song (often identified with the kingfisher, gull, petrel or swan), which is considered a good omen by Greeks and poets because according to legend it only builds its nest on a calm sea.

We had hoped at the start of the Alcyon project that seabirds and all marine and coastal biodiversity of our sub-region, threatened by various pressures, would nest, just like Alcyon, on the calm marine environment of West Africa. This is what this project, named Alcyon by my former colleague Julien Semelin sets out to achieve.

After four years of the Alcyon project, this is no longer a dream. It is, in fact thanks to the Alcyon project that light has been shed on key sites for the conservation of birds and biodiversity at sea; what we call marine Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas – marine IBAs. Yes, a network of 13 marine IBAs has been identified as part of the Alcyon project, off our sub-region through well-developed methodology based on strict criteria followed by the BirdLife International Marine Programme team.

However, the purpose of the Alcyon project was not only to focus on identifying marine IBAs. It is to reach a harmonious West African eco-region, like an Alcyon nest on a calm sea. At this stage, it is more than necessary to put in place appropriate measures to address the threats identified while further knowledge is gathered on other risks that might impede better conservation of seabirds and biodiversity.

For this reason, the project team has begun a process to develop a Regional Strategy and Action Plan (SAP) for seabird and marine biodiversity sustainable conservation off the coast of West Africa. This strategy paper would make it possible to build on the Alcyon project achievements in order to sustain conservation of the resources concerned.

In October 2016, we organized a workshop for wrapping up and future prospects of the Alcyon project to take stock of project achievements, present the strategy paper developed, and to seek contributions from stakeholders, local partners, international experts, and policy makers to better consider the strategic action needed to address the risks and threats identified in the SAP.

Undoubtedly, implementing the priority action identified in this SAP will contribute effectively to reducing impact in the long-term and even eliminating the threats identified in marine IBAs. It is precisely continuing implementation of our Strategic Action Plan through a marine programme, which thanks to the overlap of the different components could achieve our objective.

Alcyon will definitely no longer be a project, but rather the Seabird and marine conservation programme in West Africa. You will read news of this marine programme – the Alcyon programme in the next few issues of our Newsletter!

German police accused North Africans falsely

This video says about itself:

5 January 2017

German police in Cologne apologise after referring to North Africans as “Nafris” in a tweet. The police department has, however, defended racially profiling them during New Year festivities.

Translated from Judith van de Hulsbeek, Dutch NOS TV correspondent in Germany:

Hardly any North Africans in Cologne at New Year

Today, 16:31

Among the large groups of men who went to the New Year celebration in Cologne this year came, there appear to have been hardly any North Africans. This is in contrast to what the German police said before. …

After the New Year events there was commotion about a tweet by a policeman, in which he labeled a large group of men as ‘Nafris’, abuse for supposedly criminal North Africans. …

The police investigated whether among the men were persons accused of the assaults on New Year a year ago. But there is no evidence for that. “None of the suspects of Cologne in 2015-2016 and none of the 75 persons who had then received an exclusion order have been reported this year,” said Police Chief Mathies in a press release.

Save African grey parrots

This video says about itself:

African Grey Parrot: Species in Decline (English)

14 September 2016

The African Grey Parrot – a highly intelligent bird that is popular as a pet – has been eliminated from much of its west African range and the largest populations are now only found in central Africa. In the fall of 2016, delegates from around the globe will meet for the world’s leading forum to debate and discuss issues related to international wildlife trade – the 17th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (CoP17) to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, or CITES. Parties will consider a proposal to transfer the African Grey Parrot (Psittacus erithacus) from Appendix II to Appendix I, effectively banning international commercial trade in the species.

Read the full proposal here.

The Cornell Lab or Ornithology in the USA writes about this:

Increased Protection for a Bird Being Loved to Death

The Gray Parrot, also known as African Grey Parrot, is one of the world’s most popular pet birds—but that popularity has fueled the capture of millions of parrots from the wild in Africa. Earlier this month, an international wildlife trade conference granted this declining species increased protections under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The Cornell Lab’s Multimedia Productions program produced this video summary about the plight of the Gray Parrot for the government of Gabon and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.

The video is also available in FrenchSpanish and Portuguese.

Grey Parrot fading from Africa’s rainforests, By Alex Dale, 8 Dec 2016: here.

Swallows’ autumn migration to Africa

This video is about barn swallow fledglings in a farmyard.

From BirdLife:

Dear Africa, they’re in your hands now

By Shaun Hurrell, 8 Sep 2016

Dear friends in Africa,

We’ve done our best. Now they’re all in your hands.

We’ve put up nest boxes and watched them grow. We’ve helped feed them. We’ve planted flowers. At school, we’ve learnt their colours, we’ve drawn them, and cheered as they’ve flown past.

They are so fast! They make a ‘swoosh!’ noise over our heads as they catch an insect. I couldn’t wait for my turn to try and watch them with my binoculars.

But now they have left. I was sad at first, but then the Spring Alive lady told me that they are just ‘on loan’ from Africa and need to move somewhere warmer for the winter. So now the chicks we watched grow will have to fly all that way.

If they arrive safely, they will be very tired. So make sure there is lots for them to eat (they’re your friends who eat the insects that eat farm crops or bite you!) So please tell everyone not to harm them, and keep green areas for them to live.

I hope to visit you one day and see them roost near you in a big tree. They say in Durban they roost in their millions! But they only will if we keep looking after them.

So now, it’s up to you.

Please look after our migratory birds.

Let me know what you see and do! Send me some pictures or drawings.

Thank you,


Children all over Europe and Central Asia are now having these kinds of thoughts as they wave goodbye to Barn Swallows, which are beginning to gather before theuir annual migrations south. This also marks another successful season of Spring Alive, a BirdLife educational project that encourages children and adults to take care of the migratory birds they learn about.

“At this time of year, we ask the people of Africa to celebrate and care for their amazing migratory birds; and the people of Europe and Asia will return the favour next spring,” says Karolina Kalinowska, Spring Alive Coordinator.

Barn Swallows from Europe spend the winter in Africa south of the Sahara, in Arabia and in the Indian sub-continent. Their wide range also makes them great ambassadors that link many countries in their migrations, with initiatives such as Spring Twins which pairs schools in Africa and Eurasia.

As well as the Swallow theme this year, every season by posting their first sightings of Barn Swallow, White Stork, Common Cuckoo, Common Swift, and European Bee-eater on the www.springalive.net website, children from Europe, Central Asia and Africa create a real-time map of the incredible journeys these birds take every year.

This year’s theme is Swallows of My Neighbourhood. One of the most familiar birds in the world is declining, but instead of being negative let’s celebrate the swallows of our neighbourhood, because they give a great start for young people to care about conservation.

All along their migratory routes, children and adults will be excitedly preparing for the arrival of swallows and other birds with Spring Alive, which launches its 2016 African season in September.

Read more here.

Find out how to participate in Swallows of My Neighbourhood with Spring Alive.