May 12 is observed as the World Migratory Bird Day, which reinforces education and awareness-raising about the need to protect migratory birds and their habitats.
For this year, the theme is “Unifying our Voices for Bird Conservation” — focusing on the need for people celebrating the day to communicate and learn from each other, across borders, within and between the world’s flyways.
Before they set off on their journeys, many migratory birds enter a state of hyperphagia, where hormone levels compel them to put on weight so they can use the stored fat for energy while traveling. Some birds double their body weight before migrating.
WMBD 2018 is unifying the planet’s major migratory bird corridors: the African-Eurasian flyway, the East Asian-Australasian flyway, and the Americas flyways.
The new partnership formally unites two of the world’s largest bird education campaigns, International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) and World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) in a bid to strengthen global recognition and appreciation of migratory birds and highlight the urgent need for their conservation. From 2018 onwards, the new joint campaign will adopt the single name of “World Migratory Bird Day” and major events to celebrate the day will be organized twice a year, on the Second Saturday in May and in October.
WMBD will also now have two peak celebration days in the year – the second Saturdays of May and October – and can in addition still also be celebrated all around the year, whenever migratory birds are present in a given locality.
Therefore 2018 is an important transition year in the history of World Migratory Bird Day. Bringing together even more people around the world, WMBD aims to reach out to a broader audience and amplify its message for bird conservation. As a new global platform that unifies efforts worldwide, WMBD will be reinforcing education and awareness-raising about the need to protect migratory birds and their habitats – at all different levels, in all parts of the wrld.
Through the activities being undertaken on these three flyways and the resulting exchange of information, WMBD wishes to increase the level of awareness about the threats – both general and specific – that birds are facing. By comparing their experiences and concerns, sharing their stories and activities, people around the world will make their voices and actions reach out even further, throughout the flyways, underlying the fact that bird conservation is, indeed, a global issue.