The ARDB aims to ascertain the conservation status of raptors and their habitats across Africa, and to help build the local expertise needed to monitor these indicator species in the future and implement a sound strategy for their effective safeguarding.
The project will be completed in two phases. The first phase involves building a database over a period of five years (2013 – 2018). The second phase involves distribution modelling of each species in relation to the availability of its habitat and production of a conservation atlas for African raptors, online and hard copy.
The project is managed by habitat INFO and co-funded by The Peregrine Fund who act as the regional coordinators for East Africa (along with National Museums of Kenya). The Bird of Prey Working Group (Endangered Wildlife Trust, South Africa) acts as the regional coordinator for southern Africa, while the West African region is coordinated by Ralph Buij (Centre for Environment and Development Studies, Cameroon) and Joost Brouwer (NiBDab). A formal partner is still sought for the North African region. Data exchange mechanisms are being investigated with the following similar recording programmes: South African Bird atlas, Tanzanian Bird Atlas, G-bird, iSPOT. Pilot studies on distribution modelling have been / are being conducted at the Universities of Pretoria, Cape Town, and Aberystwyth.
There are five objectives:-
- to establish a secure and easy to use communal store for data and observations on African raptors across their distribution ranges
- to use these observations to identify the exact habitat of each species and use the improving environmental datasets to assess the past, present and future conditions of that habitat and so improve our conservation assessments for each species
- to use these observations to study seasonal and inter-annual movement patterns of raptors across Africa and help identify locations of risk to migrants
- to use raptors to identify key habitat strongholds for their populations and by default populations of many other wildlife species in Africa both inside and outside protected areas
- to build a community of raptor enthusiasts and experts across Africa who can lobby for the preservation of those habitat strongholds and key migratory sites.
For further information please download the ARDB project overview document.