By looking at these three photos, I would guess that the photographer was really closed to the nest. If so, the act of
that sure had negative effect to the bird, which was against the code of the HKBWS. The photographer might not be the member of the HKBWS. Then, if so, it should not be linked to the HKBWS forum. Am I right?
[ Last edited by tomatofamily at 8/06/2011 16:57 ] Author: Sze Time: 11/06/2011 23:46
tomatofamily, sorry for my late reply.
The above link was from the Facebook page of a conservation group in Taiwan.
It shows some record photos and sharing about the nest and eggs of the Kentish Plover, as well as the story on how the parents protect their eggs and juveniles against predators.
As I found such information rather interesting and others may not have the chance to come across this kind of information, I posted it here for sharing.
As most of the research work cannot take on many observers, researchers sometimes take a few record photos when they found some interesting or special cases, provided that the birds would not be too much affected.
They would then share the story with the public when the birds had left, so as to minimize the impact on the birds, and yet, at the same time, let the public know more about some interesting facts of birds which otherwise they won’t have the chance to come across.
This is quite a common method people use in educating the public.
I would like to share with you the pros and cons of this method, hoping that you’d understand more about the reason why I posted this link.
In order to protect the birds or wildlife that need protection, research or conservation groups usually have to conduct research or observation, so as to understand more about the actual situation before they can formulate the appropriate conservation plan.
To some extent, the target (e.g. birds) would be harmed or affected during the course of research and observation.
However, the information and data gathered from such research can form important justification for conservation work. Author: Sze Time: 11/06/2011 23:47
As there are good and bad impacts on our target, we cannot possibly stop all the research and observation work.
Yet, we must strike a balance between the two, so that we can get the information we need while minimizing our impact on the target.
As for how to reduce / minimize the impact on the target, a few approaches can be taken, and I try to use bird research as an example to illustrate my points:
The need to research and observation: Those research and observation that do not facilitate bird conservation should be avoided as far as possible.
Restrict the number of participants: As the chance of making the birds feel irritated increases with the increase in researchers or observers, to reduce the pressure on the birds, the number of participants should be as few as possible, taking into consideration the nature and actual situation of the work.
Quality of the participants: As these researches may impact on the birds, most of the research would be conducted by the experienced staffs or volunteers of the experienced organizations.
These participants usually receive the appropriate training beforehand, and follow the lead of some experienced researchers.
For those research that may inflict more harm on birds (e.g. ringing), only those with years of experience would be allowed.
They also need to obtain professional qualification by going through accreditation and licensing system.
Restriction on the research site: The research work would be arranged in sites with restricted access or lower visitor flow.
Restriction on the frequency and duration of the research: The more data you get, the more accurate the research result will be.
And yet, the harm inflicted on birds may increase correspondingly.
So, the frequency and duration of those researches that would inflict more harm on birds will be minimized.
Look for less intrusive alternatives: For instance, in bird ringing, researchers will base on the target species and research need to choose to ring the bird with the more intrusive satellite and radio tracker, or just put on a less intrusive ring or flag on the bird’s leg.
These are some of the factors being considered in conducting research.
Would those experienced researchers, please let me know if there is anything that I’ve missed out. Author: Sze Time: 11/06/2011 23:49
In the past, the bird research results may only matter to researchers.
However, in recent years, this has changed.
As our environment is now under more and more pressure, we need to call for the participation of those who love birds and the environment to help, e.g. to write comments to the authorities or to participate in territory-wide monitoring programs.
Therefore, to publicize the research results would help to enhance the understanding of the public on different kinds of birds, their habitats and the related conservation issues.
The public would then voice out for birds and the environment, and hence forming a stronger force in conservation.
Besides, to increase awareness and affection of the public towards birds is important in bird conservation.
It’s because the birds’ well-being can only be improved if more people care about them and fight for their interest altogether.
Increase public awareness can mainly be done through promotion and education.
Given the beauty and loveliness of birds, it’s not difficult to make people love them.
However, their beauty may also put them in danger, and this gives rise to the dilemma in bird conservation.
Besides, more and more people are going to the countryside nowadays.
There are more chance for the public to come into contact with wild birds and other wildlife.
While people may be amazed and curious to see creatures they had never met, there is also a higher chance for them to unknowingly harm the wildlife.
Therefore, we need to strike a balance between promoting the knowledge and minimizing the harm on birds.
Take bird nest and bird eggs as an example.
If we never tell the public about what is a bird nest, how does the nest and eggs look like, how can we expect the general public to know what that is if they come across a nest with eggs in the countryside, not to mention how to treat it properly to minimize their impact.
If we blame them for any wrong deeds, they would probably say, “You have never talked about this.
How could I know how to deal with it?
It is very unreasonable of you to blame me about this now.”
That’s why we came up with the idea of setting up the “Home Sweet Home” sub-forum.
However, by sharing knowledge on bird nest, are we encouraging people to flock to take photos of the nest?
Of course this is not what we want to see.
However there is such a risk as human greed can be horrifying.
Therefore, we have an introductory post at “Home Sweet Home” describing our rationale behind this sub-forum, and telling the public that the research here are done by experienced volunteers, hoping that we can minimize the impact on birds while educating the public.
Besides, we also share with the public the difficulties birds encounter in reproduction, hoping that people will treasure them more. Author: Sze Time: 11/06/2011 23:50
Because of similar reasons, the main purpose of publicizing some of the research results was to enhance the understanding of the public.
At the same time, we want to recruit volunteers from the public to participate in projects that need a lot of manpower, so that we can obtain more information and data.
For example, to report on sightings of ringed birds or rare species, report on the locations of House Crow, other observations, etc.
But to publicize such information, are we encouraging people to flock to conduct their own bird research without careful planning?
This is of course not we want to see.
Although more manpower is needed in some bird research, and inexperienced members of the public can help in simple tasks like reporting sightings, this does not mean that all research work can be done by any untrained members of the public.
It’s because there are risks of harming the birds in many of the researches.
Therefore, only those with a certain extent of training, knowledge and skills can participate.
In HKBWS, there are certain research groups that need a lot of manpower to carry out simple observation work (e.g. counting).
Workshops and briefings are held to recruit volunteers to help out.
Trainings are provided to the participants to ensure that they have obtained the knowledge needed, so as to minimize their impact and harm on birds while they do their observation.
The above is some of my personal comments.
Would the experienced researchers please feel free to supplement with more information or correct any of the points.
Thanks for a million!
Thousand Thanks to my dearest friend translate my reply into English for me. Author: tomatofamily Time: 14/06/2011 13:06
Although I do not know you personally, your devotion to birds and wildlife is well known to lot of people, at least to me, as I know you also host of HKWildLife. I would not double your good intention. If enhancing public interest of birds is one of the missions to HKBWS, then I would suggest from other members of HKBWS less criticizing those who might have some acts of disturbance of birds while taking photos. We all know the true that since the growth of birds photography and people having more and better photography gears, many many birds images, including rare type, interesting type have been provided by enthusiastic photographers to this forum as well as other sites and places. Such actually enhances public interest to birds as well as wildlife. So, it is win-win subsequently. I really doubt that those involve in wildlife photography are bad hearted.
BTW, I really do understand what you are talking about the researches.
Eric Author: Sze Time: 14/06/2011 23:37
Thank you very much for your appreciation and understanding for my work on bird.
However, It is true that some photography are not bad hearted but their greed for satisfying photos are very horrifying. So teach public not to do that and how to protect the birds which are the missions to HKBWS too.
[ Last edited by Sze at 14/06/2011 23:42 ]
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