Final gap filling fieldwork in Russia in 2018 – what was achieved

The picture of the White Sea near Grinido in Karelia, Russia

White Sea near Grinido in Karelia, Russia

 

Although the data collection for EBBA2 has finished in 2017 for most countries, there was one exception – European part of Russia. Due to its mere size, which makes almost half of the entire European territory, we felt that it was justified to prolong the data collection for one more additional season. In supporting our Russian colleagues, we made a specific fundraising campaign to help them reach their fieldwork destinations.

 

Kanin Penninsula

Kanin Penninsula

 

Why mapping of European Russia is important for the overall European Breeding Bird Atlas

 

Due to the large size of the territory and big inaccessible areas on the territory of European Russia, the data collection season for EBBA2 was prolonged for one more season, 2018. The areas that stayed largely unsurveyed were mainly the areas in the North of Russia, which are also the areas that are difficult to access. The requirements to reach them, often include using of unconventional vehicles, like helicopters. This required also a large financial input, and EBBA2 team made a specific fundraising request to the general bird watching community in order to help Russian colleagues to cover as much of their territory as possible. Increasing the knowledge on bird occurrence in Russia will also help us gain a better insight on specific bird species on European level, as it can harbour large parts of individual species populations and even some species occurring only on their territory. Therefore, it is necessary to know the occurrence of birds in Russia, in order to help us better asses the overall European, continent wide, bird distribution.

 

 

How much funds did we collect and what was achieved with it?

 

In order to cover the remaining gaps in European Russia in 2018, we needed to collect 9000 euros for fieldwork. Through our species sponsorship we managed to pick out the species and their populations for which Russia is of great importance on European level, and made a challenge to general audience to support the cause. Through this, we managed to collect 7000 euros, and we have covered the remaining 2000 euros from other sources. Therefore, together with your contribution we were able to fully support the fieldwork in Russia in 2018! With this support, our Russian colleagues were able to cover and perform bird surveys in as much as 100 squares the size of 50x50km, which corresponds to the area of 250000 square kilometres! For comparison, this corresponds to the area of six  Netherlands! You can find the complete species list for the surveyed areas: List of species detected on fieldwork in Russia in 2018.

 

We would especially like to thank Mikhail Kalyakin and Olga Voltzit for coordinating the mapping effort in Russia, numerous volunteers that have crossed large areas in order to map birds, as well as all the financial supporters of the 2018 fieldwork!

 

Large thanks goes to everyone who financially contributed to mapping of additional 250 000 square kilometers in Russia, namely:
British Association for Shooting & Conservation
Duck Specialist Group
Sjoerd Dirksen Ecology
Ida & Jonna Guse
Nele Markones
Nils Guse
Peter Knaus
Jan Peter Hansen
Alli Tynjälä
Aleksi Lehikoinen
Åke Lindström
Claudia Mueller
Jakub Vlcek
Marina Kipson
And two anonymous donors.

Marina Kipson, Olga Voltzit and Mikhail Kalyakin, 5.9.2018.