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Amur falcon copyright Chandu Bandi UNEP ON THE GROUND
Raptor experts meet in Edinburgh to plan conservation of migratory birds of prey

New priorities were set to assist signatory states in implementing the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory Birds of Prey in Africa and Eurasia (Raptors MoU). The First Meeting of the Technical Advisory Group to the Raptors MOU brought together eminent raptor specialists to develop a two-year work plan aimed at addressing threats to migratory birds of prey. It convened on 20-23 January in Edinburgh, Scotland, thanks to the generous support received from the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), the Scottish Government, and Scottish Natural Heritage.


Raptors act as sentinels to the health of the environment, including for human well-being. The conservation status of most of these species is currently classified under IUCN criteria as ‘unfavourable’, primarily due to human-related factors.


Addressing the main threats to migratory birds of prey, such as electrocution, poisoning and illegal persecution are the highest priorities for the next two years. Since many of these threats also affect other wildlife species, the Group recognized the need to work with other Multilateral Environmental Agreements to achieve effective outcomes. Governments, industry, landowners as well as scientists and conservation bodies also need to play a role in this process.


The Technical Advisory Group was established in July 2013. It comprises ten Regional Representatives covering Africa, Asia, Europe , the Middle East and North Africa, five additional raptors specialists, and a representative from BirdLife International, the IUCN delegated Red List Authority for birds.


Acknowledging the logistical challenges of working in a geographically widespread group, the Raptors MOU has developed an online Workspace: an innovative and powerful platform that facilitates participation, promotes communication, and provides real opportunities for online collaboration for members of the Group.


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