Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sheba shot in the DRC!!!

I am sorry that I have to post these sad news here, but very obviously Sheba was shot in the Democratic Republic of the Congo!

I was informed that a bird was shot by a hunter in the east of the DRC carrying the transmitter with the ID 94499. Since then, no more news on the issue although I asked for more information of the exact location, etc.

So we definitely lost our bird, which was not even lucky enough to reach its wintering grounds for the first time in its life. In my opinion this is proof of what happens to birds on migration. If it's not habitat destruction or pesticides, it is illegal shooting. What a sad story!


  1. What a shame. It makes you realise what these birds have to go through each year. It also highlights how important it is for studies such as yours to find out what is happening to migrant species that mostly disappear from our sight when they head off on migration.

  2. So 50% of Sooty Falcons do not make it in their first year! Every nest and every nestling is critical to the species. These birds also demonstrate that conservation and the environment we depend upon are not just the responsibility of each nation, but of all nations together - Oman, Sudan, Ethiopia, CAR, Chad, DRC, Madagascar in this case to name but a few. A complex world that we are so hell bent on simplifying. Keep up the good work in bettering our understanding, and let us all try and convince others of what is required.

  3. Its a fact that we rarely know much about any migrating species away from its breeding grounds. In the case of sooty falcon, they spend more time away from their breeding grounds than they do on them. So, although breeding grounds are very important, conservation that only considers problems at the breeding places is incomplete and may not be effective.

  4. Hi all!

    In the meantime I received the transmitter by postal mail. It is in a very good condition and we might be able to tag it to another juvenile next season (if ever we receive the funds to continue our work there). I completely agree to Tom, it's really a shame what happened to this bird. As if there weren't enough challenges to face during this long journey!
    And another thing becomes quite clear: the work which was done especially by Mike and colleagues the past years on the breeding grounds in Oman is not enough to protect the species. A sheer impossible task to protect this rare species on and outside the breeding grounds...