Europe and Central Asia
27 Sep 2011

Free app puts Iberian IBAs on the map

By Adrian Long

A free app that aims to encourage sustainable tourism in the Important Bird Areas of Spain and Portugal is available for users of Apple’s iPhones and iPads. The app, Iberian Birds, will enable users to find the nearest IBA, based on their geo-location (GPS) data, and learn what birds are to be found there. Iberian Birds has been funded by the Iberaves project, and is the fruit of collaboration between BirdLife International, SEO/BirdLife (BirdLife in Spain) and SPEA (BirdLife in Portugal). Iberaves is a European Union-funded project which provides training for hoteliers, travel companies, transport professionals and guides to help them meet the needs of birdwatching tourists in Natura 2000 sites, Europe’s system of protected areas. Many of the IBAs in Spain and Portugal are also Natura 2000 sites. “We want as many people as possible to download Iberian Birds”, said Asunción Ruiz, Excutive Director SEO/BirdLife.“The Iberaves project is based on the belief that birdwatching tourism is an ideal way of bringing sustainable development to Natura 2000 areas, maximising the benefits to local people and biodiversity, while minimising the negative impacts that tourism sometimes provides.” Iberian Birds provides details of 479 IBAs, including ornithological information, location and boundaries, and land use. The app also contains factsheets on over 170 bird species, with information on their ecology, the threats they face, and their IUCN status. Using Iberian Birds, you will be able to: - search for IBAs and bird species based on criteria such as habitat, land use, taxonomy and IUCN status - find IBAs based on geo-location (the GPS coordinates provided by your phone) or distance from your destination - display results in list form or as pinpoints on a map - create lists of must-see IBAs and species - write and save notes about a particular IBA or species The App is now online and can be found by one of three ways: 1) Searching for 'Iberian birds' in the app store on an iPhone 2) Doing the same search in the iTunes Store (through iTunes) 3) Or it can also be seen here -

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