B a l d I b i s w o r k s h o p This summer, over 50 experts, including representatives from ICBP, attended a workshop to diseuss measures to save the Bald Ibis (kmntkus eremila. Once distributed through central Europe, North Africa and the Middle East, the Bald Ibis is reduced to 430 wild birds, all of which occur in Morocco. The penultimate population, in Turkey, became extinct in 1989. (Captive-bred birds have been released in Turkey, but they are not regarded as a viable population.) Agricultural intensification is believed to be largely responsible for the decline, with a number of drought years in northern Africa at the end of the 1970s also contributing. Birders should be aware that human disturbance is also a problem, and Moroccan children have learnt to throw stones at the birds to flush them for visiting birdwatchers, in return for a tip. The recent designation of the Oued Massa National Park in Morocco provides some hope. Approximately 250 of the remaining 430 wild individuals occur in the Park, and the Government of Morocco deserves congratulations for the designation. It is essential, however, that effective protection for the Bald Ibis is introduced in Morocco immediately, if the species is to have a chance of survival. Gi'.ORGINA GRKKN
Volume: 
Issue 11

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