Written by Gyorgy Szimuly/WorldWaders
Recent report by the Sociable Lapwing project team suggests that an important staging site was identified for Sociable Lapwing in East Turkey. Staging flock was found by members of Doga Dernegi, the BirdLife International Partner in Turkey, by providing coordinates of one of the Amazing Journey travellers, named Erzhan.
Erzhan is one of satellite marked Sociable Lapwings from Kazakhstan which provided signals on October 3rd form East Turkey. Based on Mr. Ferdi Akarsu (Doga Dernegi), local team searched for Erzhan on Ocotber 9th and found a hundred birds close to Erzhan’s location while next day numbers increased to more than 550 individuals. Erzhan was not seen in the field, possibly due to the bad and wet weather, and number of birds was probably underestimated.
Turkey seems to play a key role in holding Sociable Lapwings at least during fall migration. In October 2007 the largest flock ever of 3200 Sociable Lapwings was found, also in Turkey. Despite this number overwrote the suggested population figures conservation efforts continued to stop further decline of Sociable Lapwing populations.
BirdLife International says “this new information strongly suggests that this part of Turkey is important for staging Sociable Lapwings.” Additional ground monitoring of migrating flocks supports the project at several sites throughout Turkey.
More information about the project could be read and birds could be followed on Amazing Journey’s website.
Animated map overview of Erzhan’s journey to Turkey. Note sound clip is attached with animation. To avoid disturbance of others turn the volume down or mute. Refresh (reload) page if map doesn’t appear.
Elevation chart of Erzhan’s presumed routing.