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Flying over Natura 2000: The beginning

Miroslav Bobek  10.09.2005 15:12
Hungarian male Koppany. - Autor:Miroslav Bobek
Hungarian male Koppany.
Autor:   Miroslav Bobek  

Long years we tracked the traces of Black storks from the Czech republic to Africa. Many of you surely remember Kristyna and maybe other "backpacked" storks. Then we left Central Europe but stayed, however, faithful to storks - New Odyssey goes on the fourth year in which we map Black stork migration in Asia. And right now, a new project begins: Flying over Natura 2000. Nineteen Black storks from eight European countries - from Spain to Estonia - wears little satellite transmitters on their backs. Some of them already begin their flight and, obviously, a very interesting autumn is ahead of us. 

The all-European project, that we initiate in the Czech Republic by a press conference on Tuesday September 13, aims to inform about the net of protected territories of Natura 2000 system by means of storks. It is similar as when African Odyssey informed not only about the storks, but about the peoples' lives in places where they lead us to as well. However, to be honest, we who participate on this project's realisation appreciate most the mystery of which way and where the storks will fly. The ones from Baltic area in particular may surprise us a lot - the have already made so.

Miroslav Bobek releasing the male Tomas. - Autor:Jan Schlindenbuch
Miroslav Bobek releasing the male Tomas.
Autor:   Jan Schlindenbuch  

Flying over Natura 2000 project is coordinated and backed from Brussels. Two teams are in fact in charge of its practical realisation: the West-European one lead by Gerard Jadoul, and the one shielded by Czech Radio which is in charge of Central and Eastern Europe. The words "the one shielded by Czech Radio" can be replaced for "the team of African and New Odyssey". Most of the work needed to mark the storks in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Latvia, and to prepare the required software or to evaluate the data for all the European storks is made by the people that were already at the tracking of Kristyna: And, most of all, these are Magdalena Dittlova, Frantisek Pojer, Martin Straka and Lubos Peske.

Marking Latvian female Maija. From left: Maris Strazd, Zdeněk Moudrý, Lubomír Peške. - Autor:Miroslav Bobek
Marking Latvian female Maija. From left: Maris Strazd, Zdeněk Moudrý, Lubomír Peške.
Autor:   Miroslav Bobek  

The list of all marked storks is on a special page. We marked three adult nesting individuals in the Czech Republic. In reality, four Czech 'backpacked' storks are flying to wintering grounds. The fourth one - Claude, was marked in France. In Western Europe, mostly non-nesting storks were being trapped and one came into the way who was leg-rang in 2001 in Most.

I will get back to the work that we did during past months, but now what storks have already flown out:
Eliska (Czech Republic) - left the nest in July and after a stay in Germany she is now in France; she will sure fly to Africa across Gibraltar.
Dalibor (Czech Republic) - his transmitter works very poorly...
Tomas (Czech Republic) - he started to fly southeastward recently; he will probably fly over Bosporus.
Mathilda (Belgium) - she started as the first west-European bird; now she is in Spain.
Jaak (Estonia) - great surprise - he flew out in July and now is staying in Russia for a long time. He will probably fly to Africa along Pontic trace, but we cannot exclude he will stay in Asia.
Tooni (Estonia) - started in August, now in Ukraine.
Maija (Latvia) - started her way also in August, now she is in western Ukraine
Varis (Latvia) - left the nest in August and still staying in Romania


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