New Sociable Lapwing Action Plan revealed today

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An important step for the future conservation of Sociable Lapwing will be made later today in La Rochelle, France, when the new International Species Action Plan for its conservation is presented for adoption at the Africa Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) Meeting of Parties that is taking place there this week.

Securing protection through official legislation is a vital part of protecting species throughout their ranges and formal adoption of the new International Species Action Plan by the many government representatives attending this meeting will be a very important milestone.

Speaking from the meeting – Rob Sheldon – Sociable Lapwing Project Leader and RSPB’s Head of International Species Recovery said “The new Species Action Plan is a much needed update to the first one published in 2004. The new plan incorporates considerable knowledge about the threats we have discovered during the past seven years and presents a roadmap for tangible conservation action that our Range State Partners have embraced and are already carrying out.”

AEWA is an international treaty administered by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) dedicated to the conservation of migratory waterbirds such as pelicans, cranes, storks, terns and waders and their habitats throughout their range. More than 200 representatives including Government officials, NGOs and relevant experts are coming together at the meeting this week to discuss urgent conservation action that is needed to address the many threats facing migratory waterbirds throughout the African-Eurasian region.

“Migratory waterbirds and people – sharing wetlands” is the meeting theme and topics on the agenda include: impacts of power lines, extractive industries, renewable energy developments, agrochemicals, alien species and climate change on migratory waterbirds, the importance of waterbird monitoring, promotion of twinning schemes and strengthening the implementation of AEWA, particularly in Africa.

The meetings were directly preceded by the annual World Migratory Bird Day, which took place last weekend. You can read more about that here.

The image at the head of this post is of members of the Sociable Lapwing International Working Group who contributed to the new Action Plan at their inaugural meeting in Syria during March 2011.