This summer, scientists from ACBK (BirdLife in Kazakhstan) have been monitoring Sociable Lapwings again at their main study site in central Kazakhstan for the seventh year of a long term research project supported by RSPB, BirdLife International, Swarovski Optik and The UK Governments’ Darwin Initiative.
In addition to the eyewitness reports we’ve received confirming Sociable Lapwing migration is now well underway; Abaj, Dina and Dana, three of the four birds we are satellite-tracking this autumn, have also begun their post-breeding migrations.
BirdLife International scientists monitoring migrating Sociable Lapwings in the heart of the Great Steppe have recently discovered the largest single flock seen in Kazakhstan since 1939.
During an initial period of warm weather in mid April the first returning Sociable Lapwings were found back around the project study site at Korgalzhyn in central Kazakhstan.
A positive signal from Abaj received in a transmission made on April 14th confirms he has now made it safely back to his breeding grounds in central Kazakhstan, just north-west of Lake Tengiz.
Following a number of ambiguous signals over the past few weeks, we have just received confirmation that Dinara has made it back to southern Kazakhstan.
In addition to providing important new sightings records, Birders’ contributions to The Amazing Journey website are also providing extremely valuable information about Sociable Lapwing behaviour and habitat association. These are an important aid to conservation planning.
Watch this extraordinary video of Dr. Rob Sheldon and Maxim Koshkin fitting one of the new satellite tracking devices to Alia in June 2010.
Maxim Koshkin – Conservation Project Leader for ACBK in Kazhakstan – kicks off the Amazing Journey with a report on the catching and satellite-tagging of eight Sociable Lapwings on their breeding grounds in late May, 2010.