Assessing the current status and distribution of imperial eagle and lesser kestrel in Azerbaijan
To provide training for park rangers and scientific workers in important protected areas in support of a major project aimed at improving the conservation of imperial eagles, lesser kestrels, Saker falcons and other globally threatened raptors.
As recipients of the 2007 Kate Stokes Memorial Award, this Azeri team undertook the task of organizing and carrying out trainings to build the capacity of staff members of protected areas and nature conservationists working in Important Bird Areas (IBAs). Training topics were identified through conversations with local conservationists during site visits and topics included: bird identification and counting, nest finding and monitoring and site monitoring, among other topics.
Two regional trainings were conducted one in Zaqatala and one in Nakhcivan Autonomic Republic, with participants coming from local villages in the region. Both trainings were conducted by team member Elchin Sultanov and lasted two days, with 21 participants in Zaqatala and 24 in Nakhcivan, including employees from the Committee of Ecology, state reserves and sanctuaries. The Nakhcivan training was conducted at the Institute of the Botany of Academy of Science, where the students and scientists of the institute participated and provided input. Both trainings were followed by a short field trip.
In addition to the regional trainings, several small trainings were conducted at state reserves. The team is also preparing the first bird monitoring and conservation book in the Azeri language. The book will be a guide for ornithologists and nature conservationists, protected area staff, IBA care-takers and local stakeholders.