World Migratory Bird Day is an annual awareness raising event
World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) was initiated in 2006 and is an annual awareness-raising campaign highlighting the need for the protection of migratory birds and their habitats. On the second weekend each May, people around the world take action and organise public events such as bird festivals, education programmes and birdwatching excursions to celebrate World Migratory Bird Day.
Event organizers are encouraged to register their events at the WMBD website. In this way, individual events can be shared with others around the world and help inspire them to get involved. In 2015, over 350 separate awareness-raising events were held in over 90 countries to mark World Migratory Bird Day.
World Migratory Bird Day 2016
For centuries even millennia, people have hunted wildlife for a variety of reasons – food and sport - and in the past, such activities were conducted at a scale that was sustainable. In many cases, however, this is no longer true, and as a result the protection of migratory birds is being coordinated at the international level.
Nets strung out for miles along the north coast of Africa kill millions of birds every year - and this is just one example amongst many of practices where the methods used and the numbers taken have changed beyond measure. The survival of the targeted species, many of which were once considered quite common, is in grave doubt as illegal killing, taking and trade add to the many other pressures the birds face, such as loss or deterioration of habitats.
This year’s WMBD campaign with the slogan “… and when the skies fall silent? Stop the illegal killing, taking and trade!” will centre on the theme of stopping the illegal killing, taking and trade of migratory birds, which reflects the subject of a Resolution adopted at the last Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (Quito, 2014).
History of World Migratory Bird Day
The very first World Migratory Bird Day was launched by AEWA and CMS on the weekend of 8-9 April 2006 with support from world renowned author Ms. Kuki Gallmann. On her famous wildlife reserve ‘Ole Ari Nyiro’ in Laikipia, Kenya, the central launching event called WINGS was held. The event was inspired by the phenomenon of bird migration and the growing need for migratory bird conservation and was attended by a number of international personalities from the worlds of art, business and conservation.
The World Migratory Bird Day campaign is jointly organized by the CMS and AEWA Secretariats. The global campaign is also supported by a growing number of partners and is made possible thanks to the voluntary contribution by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB).
To learn more about World Migratory Bird Day and how to participate, please visit us at: