Today is World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) 2022! WMBD is a bi-annual event which aims to raise awareness on the importance of migratory waterbird conservation.
This year’s theme is to bring attention to the impact of light pollution. 7.5% of seabird species are attracted to and confused by artificial light pollution, which can result in injuries or cause them to be grounded and unable to fly.
Of course, light pollution is just one of many issues that impacts migratory birds. Climate change and habitat loss are two of the main factors that are threatening all species, including birds, across the world.
President of the CIC, Dr. Philipp Harmer, spoke on the importance of supporting migratory waterbirds given the pressures they are under as part of his statement for WMBD.
“Humans have a responsibility to care for biodiversity, a fact which very much extends to migratory birds. All too often, people forget that we are the root cause of many global issues. Even something as trivial to us as light can have disastrous consequences for wildlife.
It is therefore our responsibility to give back. Hunters, as one of the few groups of people with a vested interest in migratory waterbird conservation, have been working to protect bird populations and habitats for countless years, serving as one of many examples of hunters rendering services to society.”
Hunters support migratory waterbird populations by engaging in activities such as dealing with invasive predators, facilitating the collection of tracking data, and the creation of nesting sites.
In addition, inspired by this year’s theme, the CIC is issuing a challenge to its friends and members. In order to reduce the impact of light pollution, we are asking you to limit the amount of light you produce next time you visit coastal areas.
Whether you are going waterfowl shooting, or simply going to see the beach, try and reduce the amount of unnecessary light you produce. This could be limiting the use of the flashlight on your phone, or simply planning your trip during the daytime.
While these may seem like small gestures, we will need to collectively make minor adjustments to our daily lives if we want to reach our biodiversity goals.