Last November the 15th Pan-African Ornithological Congress took place in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. It was a much anticipated meeting because it had to be postponed for two years due to the pandemic, and for many of us it was the first in-person congress we had attended for some time.
MLSG was, of course, in attendance, with several of the ExCo members giving presentations or organising events. The highlight of MLSG participation at PAOC was on Tuesday 22nd when both a symposium and a round table focused on African-Eurasian migrants took place. Both events were co-organised by ExCo members and were entitled ‘Integrating science, policy and development to address unsustainable land use linked to African-Eurasian migrant landbird declines’.
There were 16 very interesting presentations at the symposium given by researchers and stakeholders from different African and European countries. They covered different aspects of bird migration and focussed on several migrant species. Following on, there was a very relevant round table and discussion on how to integrate science, policy and development towards addressing migrant landbird declines. Key to both the symposium and round table was the presence of those doing the science and those making the policies: clearly we need to work closely together, but this rarely happens.
MLSG supported six students and early-career researchers from several African countries to be able to attend PAOC and some of them also gave their presentation at this symposium. Read about their experiences in our blog.
But, on top of everything, PAOC was a great opportunity for everyone to get to know MLSG´s work, and for us ExCo members and all the other participants interested in migrant landbirds to get to know each other, exchange ideas and discuss potential ways of collaborating towards migrant landbird conservation. We hope many interesting collaborations and links may have arisen from MLSG’s participation at PAOC15. We look forward to our next big event at the EOU (European Ornithologists Union) congress in Lund 2023 when we will host a day long symposium the day before the conference. Please come along and join us and find out why what we do at the MLSG is important, and how it can help you research and conserve migrant landbirds.