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Abu Dhabi Signs International MoU to Cooperate on the Conservation of the Threatened Little Bustard

Date : 24/07/2018

Description :

International Fund for Houbara Conservation to share its knowledge and experience in species conservation

Abu Dhabi, 24 July 2018: The International Fund for Houbara Conservation (IFHC) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Castilla y León Natural Heritage Foundation of Spain to share its knowledge and expertise of conservation of the Houbara bustard for the conservation of the Little Bustard, a species of bird declared as threatened by conservation groups.

The main objective of the MoU is to launch a population study of the species in the Castilla y León region. Once the status of the species has been evaluated, the scientific committee to be formed, comprising of members from each party, will design effective programs for its conservation.

In addition, the parties have agreed to work together to develop a pilot project through an Integrated Protocol of Ecological Monitoring and Conservation of the species in Castilla y León, in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of Spain, and the European Commission.

Commenting on the MoU, His Excellency Majid Ali Al Mansouri, Managing Director of IFHC, said, “Abu Dhabi has a long-standing record of success in proactive conservation. We look forward to working with our international partners to apply our knowledge and expertise to the conservation of this threatened species.

Notes to Editors:

The Little Bustard (Tetrax tetrax) is a species distributed across the Palaearctic region. It has two geographically separate breeding populations; a western one, which is found in the European Union, and an eastern one, which breeds in southern Eurasia. The total world population is estimated at 260,000 adult individuals, of which, almost 60% is in the western range, and mostly in Spain, with between 71,000 and 147,000 individuals.

In 2010, it was listed as ‘Near Threatened’ by BirdLife International due to a moderate general population decline, driven by rapid declines in its western range. This is mainly due to the loss and degradation of their habitat, as well as the pressure of small game. The region of Castilla y León is an important breeding area of this species, currently threatened by the increasing loss of its habitat associated with changing agricultural practices and other possible causes yet to be determined.

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