European birds update

This video from Ireland says about itself:

Common garden birds 16 05 2013

For bird lovers. Featuring European Robin, House Sparrow, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Starling and Jackdaw.

From BirdLife:

The Bird Bulletin – Vol. 13

By Gui-Xi Young

The summer is over, the kids are back in school and our Bird Bulletin is back bringing you beak-sized updates from across Europe & Central Asia.

TRIAL & ERROR – right now the battle over Białowieża is being fought in the European Court of Justice (ECJ). As Poland continues to defy the ECJ’s injunction over its illegal logging activities, the European Commission has told the court that the desecration of Europe’s last ancient forest must warrant financial penalties. BirdLife now calls on the Commission to demand fines that are severe enough to show that crime doesn’t pay.

Follow #Białowieża and #SaveBiałowieża  to watch the story unfold and sign WeMove’s Defend the Forest petition.

A ‘Tern’ for the better – a 12 mile stretch of England’s North Sea coastline has just been designated a Marine ‘Special Protection Area’ (SPA), ensuring greater protection for some 200,000 seabirds. This area of Northumberland is the most important site in the UK for Arctic, Common and Roseate terns. Read more…

PAINT IT BLACK – Iceland’s environment minister has signed a regulation banning the shooting of Black Guillemots in the country. This milestone was achieved thanks to effective cooperation between BirdLife’s Icelandic partner Fuglavernd, the Icelandic Ecological Society (Vistfræðifélag Íslands) and the Icelandic Shooting Association (Skotvís). Read more…

Migration over Malta – with thousands of birds passing through Malta on their autumn migration to Africa, birdwatchers on the islands have been sending amazing footage to BirdLife Malta. Watch the footage here…

EAT, PREY, LOVE – Help us save Europe’s magnificent vulture species from the threat of diclofenac, the veterinary drug that wiped out 99% of vultures on the Indian subcontinent in the 1990s. Support our BanVetDiclofenac campaign!

Well that’s all for today’s ‘Bird Bulletin’ – tune in next week for more cheeps, chirps and chatter.

Bye bye birdies!


Bird nest webcams

This 30 March 2017 video from Denmark is about the grey heron bringing food to its babies.

From BirdLife:

24 June 2017

Big Brother is BIRD-Watching YOU!

By Iván Ramírez

Nature is but a click away with these amazing live bird cams run by BirdLife’s partners across Europe & Central Asia. Storks, eagles, kestrels – you name it! Our Head of Conservation, Iván Ramírez tells us more…

Young birders in the making

Last weekend, I took my little kids for a walk in a nearby forest. We were on a mission: we had to identify at least 10 different species of animals and 5 different plants, and I had an enticing prize to offer: an early swim in the river. As we left the car and started walking – binoculars, guides and very sleepy eyes included – we talked about everything we were seeing around us. Or I should say, rather, I (tried) to answer every single question they had…about everything. ‘What is that tree?’ ‘Can we climb it?’ ‘What is that bird?’ ‘Can I lift that stone?’ ‘What is that bug?’ ‘What does it eat?’… If you have kids, you know what it is like…let’s just say that by the twenty-fifth question your brain is completely fried and starts sending contradictory messages…asking yourself why on earth you decided to go for this walk…while loving every single minute of it.

Back to nature

Being in the great outdoors – getting dirty, cold and sweaty…going wild – is one of our ancestral rights. Connecting to our common ground is as important as trying to understand it. And so, while I answered their questions, I also put many more to them, and to myself too. In just an hour, we identified our 10 animals and 5 plants, and many more, and they were exhausted. We went to the river and enjoyed the cold mountain stream, but they kept asking for more. Since it was too hot to walk again, I grabbed my smartphone and searched the internet for some of the live bird cams that I knew of. Their reaction amazed me: glued to the screen, open happy eyes full of excitement.

Technology in flight

We all know how technology is changing the way we see, study and enjoy nature. We are now able to deploy miniaturised data-loggers that tell us where some of the rarest birds travel to, like the amazing journey of the Sociable lapwing. We can identify deforestation or droughts using satellites, and we have even experienced the flight ‘on-board’ an Atlantic gannet. We live in an the age of selfies and Instagram stories, at a time where anyone can fly a drone with their own mobile phone…and we naturalists are no different than others. Technology is here, let’s use it wisely. As an example, back in 2014, the U.S. National Park Service banned recreational drones in all of its national parks, largely to protect wildlife. But drones are also being used to monitor breeding birds…you see?

Live cams: the missing link?

So let’s go back to our mountain river, the smartphone and just how engaging a live cam can be. Right now, when millennials are increasingly disconnected from non-connected environments, technology and remote cameras could be our missing link.

Have you ever tried to bring a Black vulture to your kids’ school? Have you tried to show them how fascinating a seabird can be at night? It is all in your hands now, and we are bringing you here the latest, most updated list of our BirdLife partners’ live cameras for you to pick and enjoy.

These cameras are not fulfilling George Orwell’s 1984 allegory, but using technology for a truly positive and inspirational purpose. They have been set up so we can share our admiration of nature, and to allow those who cannot travel the chance to explore, to feel, to respect.

Have you ever been in the middle of a forest in Estonia talking to your three brothers as Black storks do? Want to feel like a kestrel arriving home? Bear the Israeli heat like Short-toed eagles?

So take a tour, watch the live feeds and admire nature from your home screen. But please remember, don’t let Big Brother win – as soon as you can, grab your walking shoes and, literally, go wild! Remember that wildness is what challenges us, so no need to climb peaks or sky-dive, just look to your nearby garden, forest…and remember there is a refreshing swim in a mountain river waiting for you.

Iván Ramírez – Head of Conservation, BirdLife Europe & Central Asia

Our Partners’ Bird Cams – Live from the Nest!

*Note: Many of these live ‘nest’ cams are seasonal, operating until the young chicks have fledged.

The following list is the most up-to-date list of our partners’ cameras currently in operation, but live broadcasts will end as the season draws to a close.

So hurry up and get watching or you’ll have to wait until next year!

DOF – Denmark

White-tailed eagles

Grey herons

Eagle owls

EOS – Estonia

Black storks

Ospreys (1)

Ospreys (2)

Grey Heron colony

NABU – Germany

White storks

Common kestrel (Hamburg)

Common kestrel (Berlin)

Cormorant colonies

GONHS – Gibraltar

Pallid swifts (operated by the Dept. of Environment, Gibraltar)

MME – Hungary

European roller

Black storks

Fuglavernd – Iceland


SPNI – Israel

Short-toed eagle

LOB – Latvia

European roller

LOD – Lithuania

Common kestrel

VBN – Netherlands

Reedwarbler nest

NOF – Norway (in partnership with Zooom)

Garden birds

SPEA – Portugal

Shag (Berlengas Islands)

Cory’s shearwater (Corvo Island)

Cory’s shearwater (Berlengas Islands)

SEO/BirdLife – Spain

Peregrine Falcon

White stork

Black Vulture

SOS/BirdLife Slovakia

White storks

European birds news

This video says about itself:

Birds of Italy – Verona

19 September 2010

Nature in Adige Park in south Verona, mid-June. Calm pastoral quality only a few minutes walk from downtown. Spotted Flycatcher, Common Redstart, Hoopoe, Mute Swan cygnets.

From BirdLife:

23 June 2017

The Bird Bulletin – Vol. 12

By Gui-Xi Young

Welcome to the latest edition of ‘The Bird Bulletin’ – our weekly news brief. Every Friday morning, we bring you bite-sized updates from across Europe & Central Asia – kick start your weekend with “what a little bird told me!”

ALIEN COVENANT – On Monday, EU Member States approved the inclusion of 12 new species on the List of Invasive Alien Species of Union Concern. One of these new species is the Raccoon dog, one of the main vectors of rabies in Europe and a major ecological threat. Read more…

Scenario 6 – On Tuesday, more than 250 NGOs from across Europe, including BirdLife, unveiled their vision for a more democratic, just and sustainable Europe. This is presented as an alternative ‘sixth scenario’ to the five ‘Future of Europe’ scenarios proposed by the European Commission. Read more…

Mighty oaks from little acorns grow” – With generous support from the Oak Foundation, BirdLife is doing inspiring work with our partners BirdLife Cyprus, BirdLife Malta and LIPU (BirdLife Italy) to reduce illegal bird trapping in their countries. Read more…

Fun in the sun! – Love nature? Love sunshine? Love Italy? Then sign up for one of LIPU’s fantastic summer camps in some of Italy’s most beautiful nature reserves. There’s something for children and adults alike!  Read more…

HAPPY BIRTHDAY BIRDLIFE – Did you know that BirdLife is the world’s oldest international conservation organisation? Well we turned 95 this week – chirp chirp hooray! Read more about our history here…

Well that’s all for today’s ‘Bird Bulletin’ – tune in next week for more cheeps, chirps and chatter.

Bye bye birdies!

Gui-Xi Young, Editor & Campaigns Officer – BirdLife Europe & Central Asia

Eurasian bird news

This 2015 video is about puffins and other seabirds of the Farne Islands, England.

From BirdLife:

16 June 2017

The Bird Bulletin – Vol. 11

By Gui-Xi Young

Welcome to the latest edition of ‘The Bird Bulletin’ – our weekly news brief. Every Friday morning, we bring you bite-sized updates from across Europe & Central Asia – kick start your weekend with “what a little bird told me!”

ANCHORS AWEIGH! Read BirdLife’s new marine blog ‘Journey to the Mid-Atlantic Ridge’ in which Marguerite Tarzia chronicles her month-long voyage across the high seas in search of whales and seabirds aboard the research vessel RRS Discovery! Read now…

Squid pro quoDr Vladimir Laptikhovsky – expert in all things cephalopod (octopus, squid, cuttlefish, etc.) – takes us down into the depths of the wild open ocean in search of food for hungry seabirds. Read more…

Nature vs. pesticides – A bittersweet victory: On Wednesday a whopping 363 MEPs voted against a proposed ban on the use of pesticides on ‘safe havens’ for farmland nature – just 13 votes shy of the needed overall majority. Nature may have ruled the day, but what was supposed to be a ‘no brainer’ vote, turned out to be a very close call. Read more…

Turkish delight! Doğa Derneği (BirdLife Turkey) is celebrating a major victory for conservation. This week, the Parliament withdrew a draft proposal that would allow building development in the protected olive pastures of Anatolia. Read more…

Well that’s all for today’s ‘Bird Bulletin’ – tune in next week for more cheeps, chirps and chatter.

Bye bye birdies!

Gui-Xi Young, Editor & Campaigns Officer – BirdLife Europe & Central Asia

Pollution killing millions of Europeans, Asians

This video says about itself:

27 September 2016

WHO Reports Pollution is Killing Millions Of People – 6.5 million people are dying every year because of air pollution-related illnesses.

6.5 million people die from air pollution each year. Their causes: strokes, heart diseases and cancer, according to a study by the World Health Organization.

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Pollution kills 14m in Europe and central Asia a year

Thursday 15th June 2017

UN HEALTH experts meeting in the Czech Republic have warned that 1.4 million people across Europe and central Asia die prematurely every year from pollution.

About half of those deaths — 620,000 — were from air pollution, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said.

Experts and ministers from across the WHO’s European region — stretching from Iceland in the north-west to Tajikistan in the south-east — are currently meeting in Ostrava, Czech Republic, to discuss the health effects of a dirty environment.

The WHO said that other things such as chemical pollution, occupational risks and unsafe water and sanitation add to the death toll. And another 85,000 people a year are killed in car crashes.

WHO Europe regional director Dr Zsuzsanna Jakab said that “we can prevent the 1.4 million environment-related deaths by making health a political choice.

“We have enough evidence. We have solutions at hand. What we need is action,” said Olga Algayerova, the executive secretary of the UN Economic Commission for Europe.

Much like the fight to stop planet-wrecking climate change, the scientists said the steps to take weren’t a mystery — it was just a case of getting on with a job that governments have put off for far too long, risking a catastrophe.

And many of the solutions are the same — replacing polluting power stations and transport with proven clean methods.

But government inaction remains the big hold up. In Britain, for example, the government has undermined renewable energy in favour of dirty fracking, encouraged greater use of polluting cars by spending over £15 billion on new roads and been repeatedly condemned by judges for refusing to publish effective plans to tackle air pollution.

A new study of 60 million Americans — about 97 percent of people age 65 and older in the United States — shows that long-term exposure to airborne fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone increases the risk of premature death, even when that exposure is at levels below the National Ambient Air Quality Standards: here.