Eugene Cheah, Contributing Photographer
The EAAFP Secretariat joined the Borneo Bird Festival (15-17 September 2016, Rainforest Discovery Center, Sandakan, Sabah, Malaysia) and gave a talk about migratory waterbirds in East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF) and how bird watchers can contribute for conservation.
Communication Officer Tomoko Ichikawa introduced the EAAF, the threats migratory waterbirds are facing to, how habitat conservation benefits people, and encouraged birdwatchers in Borneo to support migratory waterbird conservation by participating in monitoring, especially the Asian Waterbirds Census, which is said to be Malaysia’s only annual and consistently implemented monitoring programme. Participants were mostly keen and skillful local birdwatchers. Many questions and ideas were raised after the talk and throughout the festival. One of the opinions was that it would be easier to join if the local birdwatchers can conduct the census at each location and submit on line forms.
The Borneo Bird Festival is an annual celebration of the magnificent birds of Borneo, organized by the Borneo Bird Club and the Sabah Forestry Department. The festival is aimed at raising public awareness on bird conservation, promoting bird watching, and enhancing the eco-tourism activities. This year, around 7000 international and local participants joined various activities including the talks, guided walks, Borneo Bird Run, tree climbing, children’s camp, drawing contest, and booth activities.
The EAAFP Secretariat set up a booth with posters and To Our Winged Travellers (TOWT) exhibition. It was one of the most popular booths with visitors including directors of the Sabah State Government. More than 150 family groups participated in the TOWT activity.
More photos of the Messages To Our Winged Travellers are available here.