Birdwatch News Archive
Swallow is one of the declining species which Africans will be asked to monitor as they arrive for the austral spring. Photo: Steve Young (www.birdsonfilm.com).
African 'Spring Alive'
Posted on: 15 Sep 2012
Eight African BirdLife International Partners began this year's Spring Alive survey, recording their observations of migratory birds returning for the austral spring in Africa.
Spring Alive is an international project organised by BirdLife International, designed to promote children’s interest in nature and its conservation by highlighting the arrival of spring. Its core component is a mass-participation website www.springalive.net implemented for all partner countries. Children and families, and other citizens, are encouraged to observe and record the arrival of five migratory bird species each year: White Stork, Swallow, Common Swift, Common Cuckoo and European Bee-eater.
This year, eight countries – Botswana, Ghana, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Malawi, Nigeria, Uganda, and Zimbabwe – will participate in the programme for the first time. From 1 September to the end of November 2012, many bird-related activities for children, their families and friends will take place in the participating countries. People will enter their first observations of the arrival of the five selected bird species. A record-breaking number of over 40 countries worldwide will participate in Spring Alive season.
The event is intended to raise awareness and appreciation of migratory birds and underscore the need for collaborative approaches at different levels of society to help the conservation of birds and their habitats.
All eight countries will hold an official launch of the season within their respective borders. Children from eight African countries are invited to take part in a drawing contest dubbed My Spring. The young entrants who submit their works by 15 November 2012 will have a chance to win cameras.
Spring Alive is mainly sponsored by The Mitsubishi Corporation Fund for Europe and Africa (MCFEA). The aims of the MCFEA are to encourage the appreciation and conservation of flora and fauna with an emphasis on endangered species. The campaign is also financially supported by the RSPB.
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