EnvironmentGreen Policy

In Libya, Bird-watching Means More than Fun

Despite a challenging political situation, the Libyan Society for Birds (LSB) has been working for the past years to monitor migratory birds and raise awareness about the importance of biodiversity in Libya’s western region.

Through bird-watching trips and meetings with local stakeholders, Imams and local communities, the organization is paving the way for the conservation of key bird species that are often ignored. According to Birdlife International, Libya’s Mediterranean coastline and its lagoons are host to several seabird species in the region, such as the Audouin’s Gull, Lesser Crested Tern, and Sterna bengalensis emigrata, with Libya holding over 99% of the Mediterranean breeding population.

But in Libya, bird-watching linked to environmental awareness is a rather new trend. As civil society organizations were forbidden until the 2011 revolt, NGOs often struggle to create work plans that can address these issues. The major challenge to Libyan bird conservation, says Birdlife International, is the use of weapons by hunters, especially during migration. But this year hunting has seen a decrease during the migration period, says LSB.

With 317 bird species listed, Libya is a magnificent potential destination for birdwatchers. According to the African Bird Club, the country hosts three key geographic areas: Tripolitania in the north-west, Cyrenaica in the north-east, and the Fezzan, the desert areas which cover 90% of the Libya’s territory.

For more information: Visit the Libyan Society for Birds’s Facebook Page.

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Valentina Primo

Journalist, globetrotter, and determined idealist. Since Valentina left her home country of Argentina, she has searched for ways to build bridges between cultures and foster dialogue. Her previous work in international organizations in Italy and Germany fed her passion for the world of development, while her 8-year journalistic experience in Argentina and Egypt increased her curiosity for everything that challenges the stereotype. She holds a BA in Journalism and a Masters in Peace Studies with a specialization in Human Rights.

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