Wings & Waves – SPNL’s Newsletter June 2014


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Wings & Waves – SPNL’s Newsletter

Issue June 2014

Birdlife conservation workshop successfully completed in Nicosia

SPNL participated in a regional workshop led by BirdLife International organized in Nicosia, Cyprus on 21 – 23 May 2014. The workshop was attended by 26 delegates from conservation NGOs from 20 countries to discuss a strategic action plan for combating illegal bird trapping in the Mediterranean. The workshop was a perfect opportunity for representatives of NGOs from various countries to share their own conservation challenges while showing a united front against bird slaughter.

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Migrating birds stop off in Cyprus at their peril

Under the cover of night, activists patrol key poaching sites in southeast Cyprus, described as an ecological disaster zone for endangered migratory birds on their Mediterranean stopover.
Blackcaps, thrushes and other songbirds face a high-risk passage through the island despite tough prison terms and fines for poachers.
Cooked up in restaurants as a prized if illegal delicacy known as ambelopoulia, they are served “under the table”, and a typical plate of a dozen birds costs between 40 and 80 euros ($55 and $110).
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Short documentary on grazing in Lebanon

SPNL team members went on field visits to different areas in West Bekaa, Middle Bekaa, Kfar Zebian in Keserwan, to film a short documentary on grazing in Lebanon. The aim of the film is to show the lifestyle of the shepherds in Lebanon, the conflicts they face, stories they tell, and their productions. This movie will be used as part of SPNL’s deliverable in the Mediterranean Consortium of the project “Assessing and supporting cultural conservation practices in the Mediterranean, funded by MAVA Foundation”. Grazing was put forward in the project to be one of the main practices in the Mediterranean basin that has a direct link with nature conservation. Presenting Lebanon, Syria, and Jordan, SPNL made an assessment and gathered information on the current status of grazing, related policies, grazing areas, and grazing corridors between the three countries. The video was important to highlight visually what is going on in the grazing practice in Lebanon.

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Lebanese photographer Asaad Saleh joins on the Move exhibition

We are excited to announce the fourth photographer to participate in the “On the move exhibition” Asaad Saleh from Lebanon! On the Move is an exhibition of professional photography commissioned by the Mediterranean Consortium for Nature and Culture. It celebrates the lives, challenges and ecological knowledge of transhumant shepherds and nomadic pastoralists in the Mediterranean region. From North Africa to the Middle East, from the Iberian Peninsula to Turkey, Greece and the Balkans, the work of professional photographers from each subregion will be featured in this unique travelling exhibition. Read more

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MED-PHARES Kick-off meeting

In the framework of the project MED-PHARES, SPNL participated in the kick-off meeting that took place in Cagliari- Sardinia on the 23rd and 24th in April. This meeting was an opportunity for all the partners to meet for the first time and to discuss the chronogram, the work packages and the ENPI rules and procedures for the management of the project. MED-PHARES is a two years project funded by the European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument – Cross Border Cooperation for the Mediterranean (ENPI- CBCMED) and engaging partners from France, Tunisia , Lebanon and the project’s leader ACC (Agenzia conservatoria delle coste della Sardegna).

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WMBD 2014 spotlights pioneering sustainable tourism initiative

On the weekend of 10-11 May World Migratory Bird Day 2014 is being celebrated in over 70 countries around the globe. With the theme “Destination Flyways: Migratory Birds and Tourism”, World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) 2014 will highlight the links between migratory bird conservation, local community development and wildlife watching tourism around the world. Every year, more than one billion tourists cross international borders. A thriving wildlife is a key tourism asset, and the spectacular movements of the world´s migratory birds are no exception. Properly managed, popular bird-related tourism activities such as bird watching or bird photography can serve as the foundation for a mutually beneficial relationship between people and migratory birds.

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Natron soda ash push threatens East Africa’s Flamingos

BirdLife International, a partnership of over 120 NGOs globally, is gravely concerned over recent statements by the Government of Tanzania regarding the intention to construct two soda ash factories at Lake Natron and Engaruka in northern Tanzania. The National Development Corporation’s (NDC) Acting Managing Director, Mr. Mlingi Mkucha, has been quoted as saying that the two separate factories will produce 1.5 million tons of soda ash per year and will employ over 1,000 people and are expected to bring in net income of $480 m (720 billion Tanzanian shillings). NDC further said it was looking for investors to take up the investment which will be preceded by a land use plan.
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A healthy environment needed to protect human rights

“It is now beyond argument that human rights law includes obligations relating to the environment,” said the UN Independent Expert on human rights and the environment, John H. Knox, to the UN Human Rights Council. From the pollution of air and water to the unsustainable use of natural resources, environmental degradation adversely affects the enjoyment of a broad range of human rights, states Knox’s recent report on the human rights obligations related to environmental protection.

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New study shows vulture-killing drug kills eagles too

The results of tests carried out on two Steppe Eagles Aquila nipalensis found dead in Rajasthan, India, have shown some worrying results. Both birds had diclofenac residue in their tissues and exhibited the same clinical signs of kidney failure as seen in vultures. Scientists now fear that all species in this genus, known as Aquila (which includes Golden A. chrysaetos and Spanish Imperial Eagle A. adalberti), are susceptible to diclofenac. With fourteen species of Aquila Eagle distributed across Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe and North America, this means that diclofenac poisoning should now be considered largely a global problem.

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Bird Watching Groups Head To NYC Parks

A Prairie Warbler is viewed during one of the best months for bird watching on May 7, 2014 at Prospect Park in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Hundreds of bird watchers or “birders” congregate in Prospect Park and Manhattan’s central Park for the annual migration of birds that occurs each Spring. Despite its urban environment, New York City is located at a geographic nexus of the Atlantic Flyway bird migration route which results in over 200 different species of birds frequenting the New York City metropolitan area. Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP

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News in Photos

A Prairie Warbler

A Prairie Warbler is viewed during one of the best months for bird watching on May 7, 2014 at Prospect Park in the Brooklyn borough of NY City.

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A female cardinal

A female cardinal is viewed during one of the best months for bird watching on May 7, 2014 at Prospect Park in the Brooklyn borough of NY City.

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Orange Oriole

An Orange Oriole is viewed during one of the best months for bird watching on May 7, 2014 at Prospect Park in the Brooklyn borough of NY City.

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News in Photos: A great tit

A great tit carries the excrement of its offspring out of a hole in the wall on May 8, 2014 in Petersdorf, eastern Germany. AFP PHOTO

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With the Support of Mava Foundation

Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon – SPNL
Tel/Fax: 00961 1 343 740 / 00961 1 344 814 / 00961 1 748308

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Address: Awad Bldg, 6th Floor, Abdel Aziz Street, P.O.Box: 11-5665, Beirut, Lebanon

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