Breeding bird survey Kizilirmak Delta, Turkey 1991-92

Henk Nijmeijer

A preliminary visit for a longer study in 1992 which will involve a team of Dutch and Turkish ornithologists collecting detailed information of species composition and numbers of breeding birds in the delta. It is hoped that the data gained will demonstrate the international importance of the area as a wetland and help protect it from further destruction by advancing agriculture.

Project update: 20/8/96. A total of 286 bird species were recorded by the Dutch-Turkish survey team on the Kizilirmak Delta, the largest remaining wetland along the Turkish Black Sea coast. These include 121 definite or probable breeding species. 22 of these are of special importance in Turkey according to international criteria. Four bird species are on the Red List for Turkey: Dalmatian Pelican (Pelecanus crispus), Spoonbill (Platalea leucorodia), Black Stork (Ciconia nigra), and Collared Pratincole (Glareola pratincola). Other project records of threatened and near-threatened species are: White-tailed Eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla), White-headed Duck (Oxyura leucocephala), Red Kite (Milvus milvus), Pygmy Cormorant (Halietor pygmeus), and Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliacal). Overall, the survey established the need for further protection of this wetland and involved about 30 Turks in the work. Following the project, DHKD set up a station with a conservation officer in the area (WIWO in litt. 1994).