File Name: important bird areas in africa and associated islands file.zip
The name of M. Vieillot I shall therefore confine to such species as inhabit America, agreeably to the plan adopted by M. Temminck; while those of Africa will form the Genus Malaconotus , and may be represented by the T.
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Formal protected areas will not provide adequate protection to conserve all biodiversity, and are not always designated using systematic or strategic criteria. Using a systematic process, the Important Bird and Biodiversity Area IBA network was designed to highlight areas of conservation significance for birds i. IBA trigger species , and more recently general biodiversity. Land use activities that take place in IBAs are diverse, including consumptive and non-consumptive activities.
However, companies tend not to mention IBAs in their marketing. Furthermore, avitourism, like other nature-based tourism has the potential to be both a threatening process as well as a conservation tool. We reviewed online avitour itineraries, recorded sites featuring in descriptions of avitours and which IBA trigger species are used to sell those tours.
Opportunities exist to increase collaboration between avitour companies and IBA stakeholders. Our results can provide guidance for managing sustainability of the avitourism industry at sites that feature heavily in avitour descriptions and enhance potential cooperation between avitour companies, IBA stakeholders and bird conservation organisations. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Data Availability: All relevant data are within the paper and its Supporting Information files. Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist. While protected areas PAs have long been viewed as one of the most effective conservation measures, not all species are found within PA networks [ 1 — 3 ]. IBAs aim to increase awareness among governments and conservation practitioners of the importance of bird habitats worldwide.
IBAs are identified using a systematic selection process, largely based on the presence of various trigger species. Trigger criteria are based on populations of species occurring in a defined area at certain population thresholds.
The species may trigger one or more of the following criteria; globally threatened species A1 ; range-restricted species A2 ; biome-restricted species A3 ; congregations A4 [ 8 ]. More detailed descriptions of these criteria are available in Supporting Information S1 Table. Some species may trigger more than one criterion; for example, the Gouldian Finch, which has triggered IBAs under both A1 and A3 categories [ 9 ].
Despite targeting bird species and biodiversity declines, IBAs protected and unprotected are subject to a mix of human activities and land uses, including; selective logging or forestry, small scale agriculture, and nature-based tourism and recreation [ 10 ]. Avitourism is a growing niche sector of the broader nature-based tourism industry with avitourists travelling great distances to see bird species they may not have seen before or have the opportunity to see regularly near their place of residence [ 11 — 14 ].
Avitourists often acquire information about desired species, destinations and tours prior to travel, including via; magazines, birding forums, online blogs and tour company websites [ 15 — 19 ]. While some avitourists travel independently, many engage the services of a commercial company, which often ensures visits to sites with high species richness or maximises their likelihood of seeing particular species [ 17 ].
Despite the fact that IBAs are designated based on the presence of birds that would appeal to avitourists [ 12 , 13 , 17 , 18 ], we do not have an adequate understanding of how these areas are targeted by the avitourism industry. In light of such new information, conservation practitioners in IBAs can then put strategies in place to maximise the potential benefit of avitourism activities [ 20 , 21 ], while also managing the possible negative impacts of avitourism [ 12 , 18 , 22 — 25 ].
The avifauna of Australia features high levels of endemism and is sought after by many avitourists from the Northern Hemisphere [ 26 ]. In the United Kingdom and United States of America where most international avitourism source markets are located the bird assemblages are very different to those in Australia.
In Australia, the IBA network comprises over sites, approximately half of which overlap with the legislated PA network [ 27 ]. As an emerging geographic area of research into avitourism we begin to explore the relationship between avitour companies and IBAs in Australia via a content analysis of Australian avitour company websites [ 28 — 30 ].
Only Australian companies were the focus of this study to assess the relationship between domestic avitour companies and the IBA network in Australia. While international avitour companies visit numerous countries and regions, the Australian companies reviewed here tend to focus predominantly on Australian destinations. Due to their reliance on Australian birds it is in their interests to ensure birds are conserved in the wild and this study attempts to examine this relationship further.
Avitourism companies commonly use detailed descriptions to communicate the sites they visit on pre-organised avitours and the types of birds potential avitourists are likely to see on those tours. These data are freely available online, and research approaches such as this are becoming popular and cost effective methods to assess various nature-based tourism and recreation trends [ 28 — 30 ]. We formulated an attractiveness index of the Australian IBAs to test whether the IBAs that receive the most attention on avitour descriptions exhibit the attributes i.
These attributes may also be useful for managers of IBAs to identify opportunities for avitourism activities or correspondingly where some activities may need to be restricted. Specifically, we address the following questions: 1 Which Australian regions do avitours feature most frequently in their online marketing? Our results will provide some insight into the existing and potential ways avitourism can enhance conservation in IBAs.
We used a content analysis based approach [ 28 — 30 ]. Internet searches for avitours in Australia were undertaken from January to April , to determine how local avitour companies which provide services to both domestic and international avitourists are utilising the Australian bird species and habitats to sell avitourism.
The information obtained is freely available online to anyone seeking information on avitours run by Australian avitour companies inside Australia, and required no direct participation of the companies in the study. The avitour companies also retain anonymity in the study. Each company usually provides a list of the tours they offer. These include tours that are fixed date tours or are delivered upon inquiry by the tourists.
Each tour may run from as little as a day or two up to a month long with most tours approximately one week long. After visiting the avitour websites in the subsequent year it appears the avitours offered may change slightly from year to year; hence a reproduction of this study in another year may produce different results. The key patterns and outcomes however, are likely to remain similar. The locations featured were checked to determine whether they overlap or are contained within the IBA network, thereby providing an indication of IBA visitation for the purposes of avitourism.
In some cases it is possible that IBAs are visited during tours, but insufficient details prevents confirmation. Consequently, the levels of visitation to IBAs may be an underestimate. We also collected data pertaining to the species i. To examine broad geographic patterns of preference for IBAs across the Australian states research question 1 we conducted goodness of fit tests, where tours that visit more than one state gave counts for all states featured Lord Howe Island was included in New South Wales, and Christmas Island in Western Australia.
Each attribute could receive a score of 1 least attractive to 4 most attractive , which were subsequently averaged for each IBA to produce a score for overall attractiveness Table 1 [ 28 ].
We analysed the attractiveness index data via logistical analysis generalised linear model—binomial distribution, logit link to examine differences between the attractiveness index of IBAs with and without avitours binary dependent variable in the program SPSS Version We subsequently tested the data for IBAs with tours non-zero values using linear mixed modelling random intercept, random slope to assess the effect of increasing attractiveness on the number of avitours that feature IBAs in their itineraries.
The data for IBAs with avitours were transformed using a natural log transformation, due to heterogeneity of variance. For the trigger species analysis, many species can meet the criteria for more than one trigger category.
As a result, due to assumptions of independence for most statistical tests, specific trigger species used in avitour itineraries were examined descriptively. For all statistical analyses, alpha was set at 0. In general, avitour companies do not mention the fact that the sites they visit are IBAs i. An average of 2. This is likely to be an underestimate given the reliance on detailed information about destinations on company webpages. Some companies specialise in one regional area and others lead tours Australia-wide.
Victoria features in 35 tours, and New South Wales in 33 tours Table 2. The Northern Territory has almost the same number of companies as Queensland 14 and 13, respectively , but the Northern Territory companies offer fewer tours than those in Queensland 31 and 59, respectively.
Fifty-six IBAs Furthermore, for IBAs that do feature in itineraries non-zero values , the higher the attractiveness score the more avitours the IBAs appeal to, with each unit increase in attractiveness score resulting in an increase of 2. A total of tours conducted by 34 companies describe the species an avitourist might expect to see on each of the tours.
The latter species, a Tasmanian endemic, also triggered criteria A1 and A3. Species that were mentioned least often are triggers for IBAs that are located off of the Australian mainland and thus attract fewer avitours e. Sub-Antarctic penguins, Christmas Island species.
The IBA network clearly plays an important role in the avitourism industry in Australia, with almost three quarters of avitours reviewed in our study featuring at least one IBA. Featured sites include those that have conservation significant species present i.
This represents an interesting opportunity and also a challenge for conservation managers in IBAs, where balancing the potential positive and negative effects of tourism needs to be considered. There is potential to raise awareness of the conservation status of these birds among avitour operators and their clients, given they appear to be drivers of preference among avitour companies choice of destinations.
Conversely, the challenge lies in managing the potential impacts avitourism can have on birds and their habitats [ 22 — 25 ], where certain species and sites may be over-used by avitour companies in order to deliver the right experience to paying avitourists. Black-necked Stork, Gouldian Finch, Malleefowl etc. Landholders and managers of sites where these species are present, which are relied upon by avitour companies, need to minimise potential disturbance to these birds, especially during breeding seasons and other times of vulnerability [ 18 , 24 , 25 ].
Engagement and education among key stakeholders i. BirdLife partners, avitour companies, PA government agencies etc. Despite the opportunity avitour companies have to incorporate information about IBAs into their products, the IBA network is largely overlooked within the marketing and communication about sites featured by avitour companies. If avitourism is to fulfil its reputation as a sustainable form of nature-based tourism [ 31 ], then strengthening the connection among avitour companies, avitourists and IBAs would be a mutually beneficial approach.
The success of these mutualisms is of course dependent on a number of factors captured within the broader definitions of ecotourism [ 32 ] and sustainable tourism [ 32 , 33 ]. These include the long-term investment financial and social capital in these ventures, investment and economic benefit to local communities, development of pro-conservation behaviours [ 34 ]. If avitourists were actively informed about the IBA program, they may be more likely to show either monetary or political support for IBAs they visit.
Similarly, if the avitourists are attracted to IBAs as key birding sites, avitour companies may use this as a marketing strategy and incorporate it into how they describe avitour itineraries. Our findings add to an important but limited body of knowledge examining IBA monitoring and their effectiveness at conserving birds and biodiversity [ 35 — 37 ].
Few studies have investigated land use activities within IBAs, and here we have explored this in the context of tourism focussed on birds. There are, however, several aspects that are worthy of further discussion. Firstly, it is unclear what the likelihood of seeing a species advertised on an avitour itinerary is during an organised tour. Previous research has used a visibility index to predict the likelihood a species would be seen during a tourism experience using various physical and behavioural attributes [ 28 ].
This approach gives an indication of whether the species being used to entice avitourists to take a particular tour are likely to be observed by the tourists. This does not, however, take into account the methods used by an individual tour guide in the field to entice the birds to make themselves known to observers, such as the use of call playback. Another avenue requiring further examination is related to site accessibility and tourist infrastructure for enhancing avitourism across the IBA network in Australia.
While we incorporated a distance metric into our attractiveness score, this was fairly rudimentary in nature. Logistical aspects are frequently cited as key challenges to avitourism in remote areas, along with socio-political instability in some countries [ 13 , 17 , 38 — 40 ]. More in-depth analyses might consider land tenure and therefore public access to IBAs , road and other transport networks, and IBAs with multiple entry points.
While remote areas may be limited in their ability to benefit from avitourism economically, it also means the natural environment is less likely to be subjected to the potentially damaging effects of tourism [ 12 , 22 — 25 , 41 , 42 ]. However, there are opportunities for increased cooperation and communication among key stakeholders [ 43 — 45 ].
BirdLife International is a Partnership of non-governmental conservation organisations working in more than countries, with a special focus on birds. The BirdLife Partnership works together on shared priorities, policies and programmes of conservation action, exchanging skills, achievements and information, and so growing in ability, authority and influence. Each Partner represents a unique geographic area or territory most often a country. The BirdLife Partnership in Africa comprises 17 autonomous organisations in 18 countries that together have over 30, members and more than paid staff. What is the purpose of BirdLife International? Mission Statement The BirdLife International Partnership strives to conserve birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources.
Gotch , writes that the name is from L. The characters in which this genus differs from Alauda are a more robust, conical and arched bill, round nares nearly naked, and a proportionally short claw to the posterior toe. The sides of the beak, between the back culmen and cutting edges tomia are somewhat convex. In this character it has greater affinity to Fringilla than to Alauda , the bill of which is often subulate as in Sylvia , while the nares are covered. Mirafra , although it greatly resembles Calandra , differs from it in possessing the spurious remex, and in having the four instead of the three first remiges elongated
Formal protected areas will not provide adequate protection to conserve all biodiversity, and are not always designated using systematic or strategic criteria. Using a systematic process, the Important Bird and Biodiversity Area IBA network was designed to highlight areas of conservation significance for birds i. IBA trigger species , and more recently general biodiversity. Land use activities that take place in IBAs are diverse, including consumptive and non-consumptive activities. However, companies tend not to mention IBAs in their marketing.
The data used in the analyses can be consulted in the Seabird Tracking Database www. We identified five new marine IBAs for seabirds in the study area, estimated to hold ca. To date, more than 12, IBAs have been documented and delineated worldwide, of which ca. The delimitation of IBAs was initially focused on terrestrial sites and only began to consider IBAs in marine areas as recently as To qualify as a mIBA, a site must hold the confirmed regular presence of more than a threshold number of globally threatened species or congregations of one or more species BirdLife International, and Supporting information Table S2. One of the main aims of the BirdLife IBA program has been to inform management options and policy responses, through work with national governments, intergovernmental bodies e.
The need for effective global monitoring of biodiversity is clearer than ever, but our measurements remain patchy and inadequate. In the biodiversity-rich tropics, a central problem is the sustainability of monitoring schemes. Locally-based, participatory approaches show promise in overcoming this problem, but may not contribute effectively to monitoring at larger scales. Focusing on key sites for bird conservation, identified according to standard criteria, the framework institutionalises monitoring in site management authorities and Site Support Groups community-based organisations of local people working for conservation and sustainable development.
The following largely unconfirmed records from the Bulletin of the African Bird Club are for information only. A group of Congo Peacocks Afropavo congensis was also heard twice.