Assessment of Hunting Species of Birds
There are three main issues with the hunting in Armenia: (1) lack of game bird management, (2) lack of hunters’ education and awareness, and (3) lack of control of shot specimens. It can result in decrease of common species and put the rare ones under serious risks. To address those points we are assisting the Ministry of Environment in development of hunters’ licensing conditions and are providing available data on the game bird species’ populations.
- To develop and introduce the game birds' population assessment system based on annual monitoring.
- To design and introduce new licensing conditions for hunters.
- To assist in building of new system of the shot birds' control
WHEN, WHERE, AND HOW IS IMPLEMENTED
The plan is to set up the counts in all the public hunting areas of Armenia, having at list three counting spots per area, however at current with the restricted human resources we are implementing the count of game birds in Armash Wetlands and Urts Mountain Ridge. The count is implemented two times per year: in April - May for surveying the number of breeding individuals, and in July for counting the offspring. For aggregations of waterbird species we use point counts, while for the uniformly distributed territorial terrestrial birds we use transect counts.
During 2017 and 2018 the populations of 18 species of game birds have been assessed to develop a foundation for the national database that can be updated annually and serve for justified making of decisions about number of shooting permits and the species composition. Also we have started a dialogue with the nine Hunters’ Unions and Bioresource Management Agency, and have discussed new licensing conditions during two workshops.
WHO AND HOW CAN PARTICIPATE?
Many of the game birds are easy identifiable species both visually and acoustically, which means that everyone with the skills of point and transect count and the knowledge on the game bird species can be involved in the process of data collection. Obtaining of those skills can take a short training, and so what you need, is just become a Member, receive the access to the training, get the necessary knowledge, instructions, and protocols, and become a part of sustainable resource management.