Conservation of the Red-breasted Goose along the Global Flyway (LIFE16/NAT/BG/000847)


© Nikolay Petkov/Red-breasted Goose

Short name: Life for safe flight

The target species is the Red-breasted Goose – a globally threatened species.

This is the first ever project to target the whole flyway range of the species and tackle conservation problems simultaneously in the five key range states. Long-term population trends for the species are hard to determine, due to incomplete census coverage in the recent decades. It is not clear whether the observed fluctuations in counts reflect genuine population change or variations in count completeness and/or the wintering locations used by the population. However in recent years there is more evidence for incurred actual population decline.

 

The threats faced by this species are among the most pertinent to waterbird conservation, including agricultural changes, hunting and development pressures. High levels of disturbance at roosts and feeding sites are caused by hunting, boating, fishing, and deliberate scaring. In addition to threats which result in direct mortality, those causing prolonged disturbance are of considerable concern. Anthropogenic disturbance threatens goose populations because it results in increased energy expenditure through escape flights, and reduced energy intake through reduced time spent feeding. Direct mortality from hunting is a key threat to this species. Recent preliminary analysis of available information on the fate of satellite tagged Red-breasted Geese indicates up to 40% mortality caused by spring and autumn hunting at staging sites in Russia and Kazakhstan.

The project is expected to make a major contribution to the conservation of the Red-breasted Goose within the global flyway.

 

Goals:

What we are trying to do with the implementation of this project:

-        Learn more on the significance of specific threats and the migration ecology distribution and migratory movements of the Red-breasted Goose by tracking birds and on the ground surveys.

-        Engage stakeholders at key sites and implement conservation measures to reduce direct and indirect mortality from hunting and associated disturbance at key staging sites along the global flyway.

-        Work with key stakeholders to develop management practices for Red-breasted Goose conservation at key sites and enhance conditions for the species.

-        Engage communities and stakeholders to enhance community pride in and support for the conservation of Red-breasted geese and the Natura 2000 and other key sites that they depend on.

-        Develop and implement flyway scale comprehensive monitoring system for evaluation of the species status and the effect of the implementation of the International Species Action Plan implementation.

 

Actions:

The project involves a suite of actions linked together to achieve the project objectives:

-        Investigate threats and survival during spring and autumn migration of the species using satellite telemetry to allow planning adequate conservation measures along the flyway;

-        Assess the hunting pressure and practices at keys sites along the flyway to plan adequate conservation and mitigation measures to reduce threats.

-        Adopt National Species Action Plans for Kazakhstan and Romania and advocate for appropriate management prescriptions to be incorporated into SPA management;

-        Testing of pilot creation of safe feeding opportunities in non-hunting zones through habitat restoration and land management;

-        Reduce direct killing and disturbance of Red-breasted Goose at roots sites by introducing new patrol schemes, techniques and systems at key sites;

-        Develop and implement flyway scale comprehensive monitoring system for evaluation of the species status and the effect of the implementation of the International Species Action Plan.

-        Raise awareness about the species conservation needs along the flyway and enhance community pride in and support for the conservation of Red-breasted geese.

 

Period of implementation: 5 years (September 2017 – October 2022)

 

Range states:

  1. Dunabe Delta and Razim-Sinoe Complex
  2. National Nature park “Tuzlovky Limani”
  3. Kulykol-Taldykol Lake System
  4. Shabla Lake Complex
  5. Balta Albă - Amara – Jirlău
  6. Balta Mica a Brailei
  7. Svishtov-Belene Lowlands
  8. Mandra - Poda Complex
  9. Iezerul Călăraşi
  10. Bertesti de Sus – Gura Ialomitei
  11. Belene Islands Complex
  12. Vaya Lake (Bourgas)
  13. Lacul Strachina
  14. Zharkol lakes
  15. Akkol-Karasor-Uzynsor lake system
  16. Koybagar-Tyuntyugur Lake System
  17. Lake Manych Gudilo IBA
  18. Durankulak Lake
  19. Atanassovsko lake

 

 

Project parthers:

 

Coordinating beneficiary: Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds/BirdLife Bulgaria (BSPB)

 

The project will be implemented by 10 associated beneficiaries:

  1. Association for the Conservation Biodiversity of Kazakhstan/BirdLife Kazakhstan
  2. Association of Romanian Hunters & Anglers
  3. ROMSILVA National Forestry  Agency – Small Wetland of Braila Natural Park
  4. Ministry of Environment of Romania
  5. National Natural Park “Tuzlovsky Limani”
  6. State Biosphere Reserve “Chenjie Zemli” Russia
  7. Regional Ecological Organization “Renaissance”-Ukraine
  8. Geese and Swans Study Group of Norht Eurasia – Russia
  9. Romanian Ornithological Society/BirdLife Romania
  10. “ABS Zharkol” Ltd – Kazakhstan

 

The project is implemented in close coorporation with AEWA Secretariat and the AEWA Red-breasted Goose International Working Group.

 

The Conservation of the Red-breasted Goose along the Global Flyway project is co-funded by the European Commission through LIFE Program.

 

Budget: overall 2 557 817 Euro (maximum EU contribution 1 918 320 Euro)

 

Project website: www.savebranta.org