MSB Project Organizing a Webinar to Protect the Migratory Birds from Agricultural Chemicals in the Red Sea Flyway

Posted on Tue, 04/04/2023

Birdlife international- Jordan  

The Regional Flyway Facility team at the Migratory Soaring Birds Project organized a webinar on “Agriculture and Nature of Migratory Soaring Birds Conservation in the Rift Valley / the Red Sea Flyway “on the 4th of April 2023. The objective is to raise awareness of the risks posed by use of agrochemicals in the flyway and the available tools developed by the MSB project to support best practices to safeguard MSBs from threats of the Agrochemicals.

Mr. Osama Al-Nouri, Migratory Soaring Birds Project Manager at Birdlife started the webinar highlighting that responding to risks posed by the sector to birds, the MSB project issued a set of guidance material that deals with both preventing the Risk to Migratory Birds from poisoning by agricultural chemicals and minimizing the impacts agricultural expansion and intensification on Migratory Soaring Birds within the Rift Valley/Red Sea Flyway.

Alex Ngari the MSB Project Africa Flyway Officer, said: “Agriculture has been identified as one of the most important productive sectors that pose direct and indirect threats to migrating species of birds within the Rift Valley/Red Sea flyway, and it is forms the backbone of the many national economies “. “Persistent organochlorine and mercury-based pesticides which are banned or restricted by the World Health Organisation, and which are no longer in use in most of the developed countries continue to be manufactured and are still in widespread use in the region “. He added.


National cases studies were presented in the webinar:  The use of veterinary drug diclofenac and its lethal effect on endangered vultures and vultures in Jordan - Presented by Mr. Tareq Qaneer, Head of the Birds Unit at RSCN, from The Society of Nature Protection in Lebanon (SPNL), Ms. Bassima Khatib, Head of the Nature Protection Department, presented a study on the achievements of MSB Stage II, followed also from SPNL by Rania Khalil with a presentation on “Hima Farm”. From The Sudanese Wildlife Society (SWS) in Sudan, Prof. Ibrahim Hashim, its President, presented a study entitled " Mainstreaming Migratory Soaring Bird (MSB) conservation considerations in the Agriculture Sector in Rift Valley/Red Sea flyway".


The discussion in the Webinar highlighted that, the application of pesticides has mainly focussed on enhancing farm-level productivity and little attention is given to the impacts of the chemicals at a wider scale.


The webinar concluded by a Q&A session that included further clarifications and update on the current and future trends in the status of agrochemicals sub-sector in the region and the risks to MSBs, the need to raise awareness about the agricultural guidelines developed by the MSB Project, further coordination at local, national, and regional levels.