Maltese ornithological society (BirdLife Malta) hosted a workshop about protection of birds in the Mediterranean sea this November. The workshop was attended by most Mediterranean countries, including north-African. The representatives of BirdLife partners, other conservation NGOs, state ministries and the European Commission met on a beautiful island of Gozo, the little “brother” of the island of Malta. A three-day workshop was a great opportunity to exchange knowledge and experience, recognize gaps in conservation of seabirds and make new connections in the Mediterranean nature conservation network.
The first day was dedicated to Maltese presentations of their work for the protection of marine birds which has no less than a half-century tradition! Their program has notably advanced in the past years (also with the financial support of the EU in the LIFE+ Malta Seabird Project) and Malta is now a proud care-taker of marine IBA network which is a result of excellent research work. The second day of the workshop a forum about the existing programs and initiatives for the protection of birds in the Mediterranean was held when we, the BirdLife partners from accross the Mediterranean, presented our work. Later on regional round tables were organized aiming at scheming international projects to enforce transboundary cooperation in the protection of seabirds. On the last day of the workshop the emphasis was given to concrete proposals and needs for establishment of high-seas and transboundary IBAs. The latter are an important issue in the Gulf of Trieste, too, where care for the seabirds should be taken by both, Slovenia and Italy.
At DOPPS – BirdLife Slovenia we aspire that our experience, knowledge and data collected in the scope of the project SIMARINE-NATURA can contribute to expansion of marine IBAs and Natura 2000 sites accross our national boundaries to the rest of the Gulf of Trieste.
author: Urša Koce