By: Ingrid Caraballo
World Migratory Bird Day is a two-day annual awareness-raising campaign which highlights the need for protecting migratory birds and their habitats. This event is acknowledged on October 12 in the Caribbean and celebrated on May 11 in Canada along with the United States. Every year, a theme is decided by many organizations like The Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) and the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (AEWA). The CMS and AEWA being two International Wildlife Treaties administered by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP). The chosen theme for this year is “Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution!”, aiming to show all negative impacts of plastic pollution on the migratory birds and their habitats. Ways people celebrate this day include bird-watching hikes, festivals, movie screenings, talks and presentations, and education programs.
“The growing scourge of plastic pollution across our planet is affecting waterbirds in many ways. When ingested, it can lead to poisoning and even starvation. Plastic floating in the oceans, along rivers or stranded along our shorelines and in wetlands can cause injuries, impede mobility and cause birds to drown.” “Waterbirds are facing so many threats, everyone can do something to tackle this one.” Said Jacques Trouvilliez, Executive Secretary of AEWA.
As you can see, many birds are globally threatened by the effects of plastic pollution, this material having an annual production of more than 300 metric tons. It is very important that we as a community should be very much aware that our discarded pieces of plastic can end up in many ecosystems, causing a lot of undeserved harm to migratory species around the world. Let’s help wildlife’s burden of plastic, join clean-up activities in your area, remember the big three “R’s” (Reduce, reuse and recycle). Limit your use of plastic materials and replace them with eco-friendly alternatives, such as plastic straws with metal straws. Most importantly, spread the word to your friends and family to let them know how they can help with the cause!
1.World Migratory Bird Day 2019 – Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution. (2019, March 5). Retrieved October 11, 2019, from https://www.unep-aewa.org/en/news/world-migratory-bird-day-2019-protect-birds-be-solution-plastic-pollution
2.World Migratory Bird Day: 11 May & 12 October 2019. (n.d.). Retrieved October 11, 2019, from https://www.greeningtheblue.org/event/world-migratory-bird-day