By Faranak Bakhtiari

World Migratory Bird Day: birds connect our world

May 11, 2020 - 17:41

TEHRAN – World Migratory Bird Day was celebrated worldwide on May 9, under the theme “Birds Connect Our World”.

First held in 2006, World Migratory Bird Day is celebrated on two peak days each year (the second Saturdays of May and October) to highlight the need for international collaboration to ensure the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats globally. 

The theme underscores the importance of conserving and restoring the ecological connectivity and integrity of ecosystems that support the natural cycles that are essential for the survival and well-being of migratory birds.  Given that there is clear evidence that the destruction of wild areas can facilitate the kinds of infectious diseases the world is now combatting, urgent action to better protect and sustain wildlife and their habitats are needed.  

Because migratory birds depend on a network of sites that cross national borders along their migration routes for breeding, feeding, resting, and overwintering, international action to protect them is essential. 

Listening to the birdsong is pleasant, imagine you are tired of daily routine and industrial life, so close your eyes and imagine sitting by a pond, the sound of birds polishes your soul, and you will see that you are feeling better, but if this situation happens in the real world, we will all be fine.

But what has happened, or rather what have we done, that no bird nests on the trees of the cities anymore, of course, if a tree is left in the city, unfortunately, all the trees have been replaced with apartments and high towers, that no place is left for the birds.

Iran is a climatically rich country, so it is said that the number of bird species in Iran is higher than the whole of Europe. A wide range of wetlands is the reason behind migratory birds choosing Iran for an annual wintering habitat, as a large number of birds fly a thousand miles each year to benefit from this rich climate.

Many species of birds are migratory, birds migration is usually seasonal and round trip, which is due to climate change, access to food and finding a suitable habitat, so the presence of birds in an area are the signs of being in balance and that the natural cycle is operating properly.

It is estimated that there are about 50 billion birds in the world out of 9,000 species, many of which are migratory. Accordingly, about 5 to 7 million birds migrate to Iran in different seasons. There are about 530 species of birds in Iran, 320 of which are migratory species, some of which are native species.

Iran has long been a major migration habitat for birds, but in recent years factors such as urban development, habitat destruction, and overhunting have been identified as threats.
The most tragic of which was the death of over 30,000 migratory birds in Miankaleh international wetland in late January, which was announced by the veterinary organization that the birds have been killed due to the “botulinum toxin”, but it was finally announced that some fishermen, landowners or hunters may have thrown poison into the water and killed these species.

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