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Why is World Migratory Bird Day Celebrated?

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World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) is an awareness-raising campaign highlighting the need for the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats.

It aims to draw attention to the threats faced by migratory birds, their ecological importance, and the need for international cooperation to conserve them.

Bird migration is one of the great miracles of nature. Migratory birds fly hundreds and thousands of kilometers to find the best ecological conditions and habitats for feeding, breeding, and raising their nestlings.

The majority of birds migrate from northern breeding areas to southern wintering grounds. Other birds reside on lowlands during the winter months and move up a mountain for the summer.

It is truly unique how migratory birds can navigate with pinpoint accuracy. According to researchers, they can be orientated by the sun, the stars, and the geomagnetic fields. Some species can even detect polarized light, which many migrating birds may use for navigation at night.

Migration is a massive feat of endurance requiring great strength and stamina. However, today birds face additional threats caused by human activity. Every year, millions of birds are illegally killed by hunters, and recent climate change is causing habitats to shift or disappear.

How can we save migratory birds?
  1. Eliminate pesticides from your yard. Even those pesticides that are not directly toxic to birds can pollute water and reduce insects that birds rely on for food.
  2. Create backyard habitat. If you have a larger yard, create a diverse landscape by planting trees, flowers that attract birds.
  3. Keep bowls and birdbaths clean to avoid disease and prevent mosquitoes from breeding. Never forget to fill the bowl with enough food and water.
  4. Join any bird conservation group. Learn more about birds and support vital conservation work.

The theme of World Migratory Bird Day 2021 is “Sing, Fly, Soar – Like a bird!”

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