© Gyorgy Szimuly
Breeding Shorebird Atlas
Some 50% of the world’s shorebird species are in decline, and vital habitat is being lost at a higher rate than ever. We urgently need to raise public awareness around the world of these imperilled birds’ plight and the need for shorebird conservation and research.
Healthy populations of shorebirds depend on healthy habitats. Destruction of habitats, killing migrating shorebirds, global climate issues, public ignorance and many more factors are resulting in downward trends of most shorebird populations.
Urgent action on a global scale is needed more than ever, to help connect people and shorebirds.
World Shorebirds Day has been created with the following aims:
To raise awareness of the need to protect shorebirds and their habitats throughout their life cycles;
To raise public awareness of the need for continued shorebird research, monitoring, and conservation;
To connect people with shorebirds through wetland sites around the world;
Gyorgy Szimuly is a Hungarian birder and conservationist, who has focused on global shorebird conservation, bird monitoring, wetlands restoration, and shorebird population ecology in the past 35 years.
Convinced that the world’s shorebirds deserved a day of celebration, he created the World Shorebirds Day, observed every year in early September in conjunction with a Global Shorebird Counts. Today, it is a widely accepted and supported commemoration day.
“From the Arctic Tundra to 4000+ m wetlands in the Andes, from windswept Patagonia to the High Seas, shorebirds are birds adapted to extremes. But one extreme they are struggling to adapt to is human-induced changes to their habitats. Already six species of shorebird have been lost since the period of European colonisation and a further eight species are on the brink of global extinction. Together they form one of the groups of birds undergoing the most dramatic declines globally. World Shorebirds Day represents a great opportunity to not only celebrate the amazing journeys and marvellous adaptations of these birds living at extremes but to ponder their plight and what it means for our own long-term wellbeing.”