Armenian Gull – breeding period and the coastal threats
Armenian Gull is the endemic of South Caucasus, an the majority of its population breeds in Armenia in two colonies, at Lake Arpi and at Lake Sevan. It was recently evaluated as Near Threatened for the IUCN Red List. The species usually breeds in colonies on the islands, which are isolated from land predators and the human disturbance. However, at the Lake Sevan, Armenian Gulls started also breeding at the shoreline of the Lake, where their eggs and nestlings can be affected by fox, jackal, stray dogs, and humans. Another threat especially at the Lake Sevan comes from plastic pollution, which is mortal for fish-eating birds, as they swallow plastic confusing it with a fish and die.
- To secure the coastal breeding pairs of Armenian Gulls from human disturbance at the Lake Sevan
- To clean the areas located near the Gulls' colony at Lake Sevan from plastic
During this year we have already conducted inventory of the breeding pairs at the shore of the Lake Sevan, and have initiated campaign on cleaning the land. The campaign was then followed by the personnel of Lake Sevan National Park, which helped in cleaning the land significantly.
The next steps include establishment of strict control of visiting the breeding areas of Armenian Gull by humans. The control is going to be implemented by the staff of Lake Sevan National Park. As for the plastic waste cleaning the next steps include improvement of waste management in the surrounding villages and establishment of a strong control and high punishments for the local tourists.