1)Gui-Xi Young hjá BirdLife Europe, 2)Hólmfríður Arnardóttir framkvæmdastýra Fuglaverndar BirdLife Iceland, 3)Sandra Jovanovic frá BirdLife Serbia, 4) Jovana Janjusevicfrá Czip BirdLife Montenegro, 5)Tuba Kilickarci frá Doga BirdLife Turkey, 6) Natia Javakhishvili frá Sabuko BirdLife Georgia, 7) Karoline Kalinowska-Wysocka frá Otob BirdLife Polland og 8) Nigar Agayeva frá Azos BirdLife Azerbaijan.

BirdLife International General Meeting

At the end of September, Hólmfríður Arnardóttir General Manager of Fuglavernd BirdLife Iceland, attended a meeting with BirdLife International. BirdLife International is the oldest conservation organization in the world and has been operating since 1922. A total of 121 countries are members of BirdLife, one conservation organisation is a representative of each country and Fuglavernd is a representative of Iceland.

The purpose of the meeting is for BirdLife administrators and staff to exchange practical information and share experiences that differ between countries and cultures. BirdLife has six regions, BirdLife Europe and Central Asia, BirdLife Africa, BirdLife America, BirdLife Asia, BirdLife Middle East and BirdLife Pacific, and more than 200 people participated in the meeting. Women within the BirdLife association are ever increasing, and a few of them were gathered for this photograph.

In the photo are:
1)Gui-Xi Young with BirdLife Europe, 2)Hólmfríður Arnardóttir General Manager of Fuglavernd BirdLife Iceland, 3) Sandra Jovanovic with Društvo za zaštitu i proučavanje ptica Srbije BirdLife Serbia, 4) Jovana Janjusevic with Czip BirdLife Montenegro, 5) Tuba Kilickarci with Doga BirdLife Turkey, 6) Natia Javakhishvili with Sabuko BirdLife Georgia, 7) Karoline Kalinowska-Wysocka with Otob BirdLife Poland and 8) Nigar Agayeva with Aos BirdLife Azerbaijan.

 

Why are puffins vanishing?

Abstract from NY Times: Why Are Puffins Vanishing? The Hunt for Clues Goes Deep (Into Their Burrows)

Overfishing, hunting and pollution are putting pressure on the birds, but climate change may prove to be the biggest challenge.

“The puffin is the most common bird in Iceland,” said Erpur Snaer Hansen, acting director of the South Iceland Nature Research Center. “It’s also the most hunted one.”

Dr. Hansen is working with Dr. Fayet, a junior research fellow at the University of Oxford who is from France, on her project to monitor the activities of four puffin colonies, two in Iceland and others in Wales and Norway. Since 2010, he also has conducted a census, a twice-yearly “puffin rally” in which he travels more than 3,100 miles around Iceland, visiting some 700 marked burrows in 12 colonies, counting eggs and chicks.

The temperature of waters around the country is governed by long-term cycles of what is known as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation,
with periods of colder water alternating with warmer. Between the 1965-1995 cold cycle and the current warm cycle, Dr. Hansen said, winter temperature records show about one degree Celsius of additional warming — a seemingly small amount, but disastrous for the sand eels.
His theory, he said, is this: “If you increase temperatures one degree, you’re changing their growth rates and their ability to survive the winter,” he said.

Dr. Hansen’s puffin rallies show that 40 percent of the population of Icelandic puffin chicks is losing body mass over time, another bad sign.

When the adults can’t catch enough to feed themselves and the chicks, they make an instinctive Malthusian choice; the chicks starve.
Dr. Fayet called her quest “heartbreaking”: “You put your hand in the burrow and feel with your hand a little ball on the floor, but then you realize it’s cold, and not moving.”

Dr. Hansen with a puffin chick pulled out of its burrow. ©Josh Haner – NY Times
Dead puffins taken by hunters that Dr. Hansen encountered on Lundey Island. ©Josh Haner – NY Times
Taking a break while hauling equipment on Iceland’s southeastern coast. ©Josh Haner – NY Times

Greinin í heild í NY Times: Why Are Puffins Vanishing? The Hunt for Clues Goes Deep (Into Their Burrows)