Bonn 29 August 2013 – The Waterbird Harvest Specialist Group (WHSG) affiliated to Wetlands International was re-launched on the 28th of August 2013 at a special session on waterbird management at the 31st Congress of the International Union of Game Biologists which took place in Brussels, Belgium on the 27 – 29 August 2013.
Re-activating the group is a response - in part - to an increase in activities related to the sustainable management of waterbirds within the African Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) region. These include the development and adoption of the AEWA Species and Management Plans which foresee the coordination of sustainable harvest practices for migratory species such as the Pink-footed Goose (Anser brachyrhynchus) amongst range states. The ongoing processes have shown that there is a clear need for scientific and policy related advice on the sustainable use of waterbirds on a flyway scale.
Jesper Madsen relaunches the WHSG. Image by Szabolcs Nagy
As specified in the Terms of Reference adopted for the Specialist Group, the group will in particular aim to promote science-based knowledge and to act as scientific advisors in national and international processes where harvest is an issue for conservation or management of waterbird species and species populations.
Activities to be undertaken by the group include identifying the extent and types of harvest taking place within the major waterbird flyways and identifying what information is needed to sustainably manage waterbird populations as well as which knowledge gaps need to be addressed. The group will also aim to provide useful decision-making tools for harvest management processes.
Membership to the group is open to both individuals and organizations with proven record in technical and/or scientific aspects of waterbird harvest management (biological, socio-economic) and who are committed to work towards building trust between relevant stakeholder groups. Applications should be directed to the Waterbird Harvest Specialist Group Secretariat provided by the European Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation (FACE), from where they will be submitted to the Waterbird Harvest Specialist Group Board for approval.
For more information, please check the WHSG website or contact the WHSG Chair Mr Jesper Madsen, Mr Taej Mundkur at Wetlands International or AEWA Technical Officer Mr Sergey Dereliev.
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