Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory
Birds of Prey in Africa and Eurasia
In May 2003, the 6th World Working Group on Birds of Prey and
Owls (WWGBP) adopted a resolution that urged the Convention on Migratory
(CMS) to consider establishing a multi-lateral
agreement on the conservation of migratory raptors in the
African-Eurasian region. The CMS Scientific Council
subsequently recommended that the issue be considered at the 8th
Conference of Parties (CoP) in 2005 where a Recommendation
(8.12) and Resolution (8.5) were adopted.
called upon Parties to the Convention,
non-party Range States and other stakeholders to engage in
co-operative activities to promote the sustainable management of
migratory raptors and owls.
recorded that the CMS CoP supported the
development of an appropriate CMS instrument on raptors for the
African-Eurasian region, pursuant to Recommendation 8.12.
In the light of these calls, the UK and United Arab Emirates
(UAE) jointly led an initiative to develop a new international
treaty to help conserve migratory birds of prey and owls in the
Africa-Eurasian region. This initiative was underpinned by a
commissioned by Defra in 2005 which found that more than
half of migratory birds of prey in the African-Eurasian region have
a poor conservation status and many are showing rapid or long-term
population declines. A variety of human-induced threats are
causing problems such as habitat loss and degradation, illegal
shooting and poisoning, collisions with aerial structures and
electrocution by power lines. Climate change will add to
A meeting on African-Eurasian migratory raptors under
CMS held in Loch Lomond, Scotland, from
22-25 October 2007
. Negotiated text for a Memorandum
of Understanding under the CMS and an associated Action Plan.
second meeting to conclude the MoU on the Conservation of
Migratory Birds of Prey in Africa and Eurasia was held in Abu Dhabi, UAE
from 20 – 22 October 2008
. A total of 42 potential Signatories
were represented. The MOU and Action Plan were adopted by
consensus on 21 October having first been revised to take account
of the generous offer of UAE to host an interim Co-ordination Unit
for the MoU (as part of a package of UAE support for CMS).
On 22 October 2008, 28 Range States signed the MOU, which
entered into effect on 1 November 2008. South Africa and
Birdlife International signed the MoU at CMS
in December 2008 bringing the total number of signatories
to 29 Range States and one Supporting Organisation.
The Agreement area stretches across more than 130 countries
from the African, Afrotropical, Palaearctic and Indo-Malayan
realms. More than
(see Annex 1)
birds of prey - Falconiformes, ospreys, eagles and owls - are
included within the scope of the MoU.
agreed foresees more research on species ecology
and migratory behaviour, patterns and routes as well as data
analysis. Collective efforts towards monitoring and
establishing reliable population trends will be important to reveal
the impacts of threats and necessary mitigation actions.
Capacity building and training in institutions and local
communities by developing knowledge of birds of prey will be
important to create acceptance for necessary conservation