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Integrated Avian Research Program Workshop

The University of Belize Environmental Research Institute (UB-ERI) recently hosted the Integrated Avian Research Program Workshop on August 16th. This first national dialogue convened key stakeholders involved in bird research and monitoring from across the country. This conversation was significant in improving knowledge sharing, communication, and prioritization of bird research gaps and strategies for addressing these. The workshop highlighted the long-term commitment and impact of UB-ERI’s avian research program led by their avian biologist, Ms. Abidas Ash.

Through a hybrid mix, this workshop brought together a total of 29 persons from 19 different organizations. The UB ERI, Belize Audubon Society, Belize Foundation for Research and Environmental Education, Toucan Ridge Ecology and Education Society (T.R.E.E.S.), and Belize Bird Conservancy all gave presentations on their avian research and monitoring efforts. Virtual attendees included the Peregrine Fund, Massachusetts Audubon Society, and the Cornel Lab of Ornithology, who presented a biodiversity index tool they are developing, that incorporates birds as indicators of environmental health. As part of the workshop, participants identified and ranked 10 priorities in bird research for Belize. The next step is to collaborate and strategically approach the stated priorities. The UB-ERI will continue to play an important role in coordinating bird research in Belize. We would like to thank all of the organizations for their participation and crucial discussions. By working together, we can raise the bar for Belizean bird research and monitoring standards.

This project is supported by The GEF Small Grants Programme - Belize as part of the project “Building Community Environmental Stewardship in the Maya Forest Corridor (MFC) through Avian Ecology”.

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