World Migratory Bird Day in Nanthar Island Marine National Park, Rakhine State

Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS) in cooperation with Rakhine Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association(RBANCA) and the Forest Department organized the second World Migratory Bird Day(WMBD) event for 2022 at the Buddhist monastery, Aung Daing village, Sittwe Township near Nanthar Island and Mayu Estuary Ramsar Site in Myanmar with financial support from East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP) on 14 October 2022.

Group photo of participants during the bird watching trip to Nanthar Island ©️ NCS

As the second Saturday of October 2022 coincided with the cultural festival in Myanmar, we moved and held the event from 8 October to 14 October 2022. A total of 70 participants joined the event and our participants were from NCS-Myanmar, RBANCA, Aung Daing Village, Local Security Police Force and Research and Development Youths’s Society (RDYS-Sittwe). The members of Local Conservation Groups(LCG) from Aung Daing village also joined the event. T-shirts printed with WMBD global poster on the front were distributed to the participants.

The purpose of organizing this event was to raise awareness within local communities on how WMBD was formed and held annually all around the world, and also to educate the local communities about the importance of the conservation of migratory birds and wetland ecosystems. Visual presentations about the history of WMBD, annual celebrations, theme of this year, light pollution, migratory shorebirds, wetlands conservations and Ramsar sites were given. Also “Migratory Bird” song and video clips of six EAAFP Flway network sites in Myanmar and light pollution were also shown. Quiz and games were included in the event; 16 questions about WMBD, the critically endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper(SBS), light pollution and migratory birds were created in the online platform. Questions were shown on the screen and participants were encouraged to the right answer quickly.

Participants listening to a presentation on the conservation of migratory birds and wetlands ©️ NCS

Youths playing the quiz in groups ©️ NCS

Local communities and students were made aware of the theme of WMBD for this year especially the value of the natural dark, increasing light pollution, the impacts of light pollution on migratory birds and nocturnal animals. They also learned about the six Ramsar sites in Myanmar and their importance in their livelihoods. Participants also observed the conservation status of threatened species including the Critically Endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper that migrate annually to Nanthar Island and also the efforts of local and international organizations working for the conservation. The Seasonal migration of migratory birds over kilometres left the audience in awe. They are now aware that the migratory birds are fully protected under Myanmar Conservation of Biodiversity and Protected areas Law. Participants enjoyed the song, presentations and videos, had fun during the quiz and game session.

A bird watching trip was also arranged to the newly established Marine National Park of Myanmar, Nanthar Island on 15 October 2022. Participants spent two days and one nights on the trip, and went for bird watching along the coastline of the island. Our participants also collected plastic trash along the shoreline of the island. They learned the basic bird watching practices and enjoyed the bird watching on the island.

Participants on a boat for the Nanthar Island bird watching trip ©️ NCS

Participants watching shorebirds on Nanthar Island ©️ NCS

Participants collecting plastic trash on Nanthar Island ©️ NCS

Participants during the Nanthar Island bird watching trip ©️NCS

Know more about work by Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS): website.

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