International Spoonbill Working Group


Volume 5,
April 2008


This fifth issue of the Spoonbill newsletter arrives more or less 2 years after the fourth issue. During this period, we have been preparing the International Spoonbill Action Plan for AEWA. It was an intensive and exciting period during which we have collected information from 75 countries. The Action Plan was written in English but a French version has been prepared too, so that it can easily be understood by the French speaking community, in particular in Africa. To our knowledge, this is the first and (so far) the only one in both languages.

This newsletter includes some of the talks presented during the workshop held in October 2007, in the Djoudj National Park (Senegal). This meeting was mainly devoted to development of the Action Plan and most of the debates revolved around the actions to be taken for the different populations.


Spoonbill ringing in Uzbekistan, 2008

Dr. Evgeniya Lanovenko, Institute of Zoology of Uzbek Academy of Sciences

Uzbekistan is situated in the central part of Central Asia between Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Afghanistan. In the first part of 20th century Spoonbills inhabited flooded land and lakes of the Syrdarya and Amudarya Rivers, their deltas and islands of the Aral Sea.

Intensive development of land use and water resources from the middle of the last century was the reason for the Aral crisis which in the 1980s led to the degradation of Amudarya and Syrdarya River Deltas. Spoonbill was among the species which lost their habitats. It is known that in the 1980s on some water bodies of Aral Sea region their colonies still existed (Lukashevich, Ametov, 1986). Periodical appearance of Spoonbill on water bodies of central and southern Uzbekistan during the breeding season was recorded at the end of the last century. In the present time there is a small colony of Spoonbill which has existed reliably for the several years not far from Bukhara town on Tudakul Lake.

Preparation of the Spoonbill International Action Plan, initiated in 2007 by the International Spoonbill Working Group on behalf of AEWA, showed a shortage of information about the current status of this species in Uzbekistan, a need for research on the current status of Spoonbill in Central Asia and for detection of geographical connections between birds from the small colonies which have survived in the region. For realization of these tasks we have contact with the Spoonbill Working Group and the "Ivolga" student ornithological club from Bukhara State University. In both cases we have found interest and support. The Working Group provided instructions and colored rings for marking Spoonbills.

The IBA project in Uzbekistan (which has worked under the BirdLife International program since 2005) also wished to support participation by the student club in research on Tudakul Lake which is one of 30 IBAs existing in the republic. The Head of the club, Muhtar Turaev, invited initiative students to participate in this project. Project guidance will be realized through the Institute of Zoology of the Academy of Sciences of Uzbekistan by the national coordinator on waterbird census, Dr. Evgeniya Lanovenko.

Ringing is to be carried out over several years. Project information will be placed on the IBA UZ website. At the same time information about bird ringing will be distributed through the IBA network, among student ornithological clubs and ecological NGOs which will help to create a network of voluntary observers. We hope that people from other countries will help us to get information about Spoonbill marking in Uzbekistan.

Supported by: BirdLife International RSPB Darwin Initiative

© Compiled by Oleg Kashkarov
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Last modified: 06.02.2010