By Khine Sett Wai
Winter birds (or water birds) migrate to the southern regions of the world, including Myanmar, from November to February. As part of the Asian Waterbird Census Activity, water birds will be registered and the information sent to Wetlands International, said U Thet Zaw Naing, a bird expert from WCS.
A team registered the waterbirds on 6 January at Paleik Lake and Pyu Kan Lake in Mandalay Region. Also, separate teams will register waterbirds in Indawgyi Lake in Kachin State and Moyungyi Lake in Bago Region today. “The largest flock among the winter birds are ducks. The northern part of the Earth is colder in the winter season. Food is also scarce there, so they migrate to southern Myanmar and Asian countries to find food, and also because it’s warmer and the days are longer. They don’t lay eggs here. They’ll do that when they return north,” said U Thet Zaw Naing. He noted that officials collect the data annually and send it to the Netherlands-based Wetland International during the first week of May. He said hobbyists and the Department for Environmental and Wildlife Conservation are registering other migrating animals along the coastal regions.
U Thet Zaw Naing added that in the beginning, only the Forestry Department conducted the registrations, but has since received assistance from NGOs and enthusiasts.
Myanmar first started conducting registrations in 1987. Currently, the Forestry Department, WCS, Myanmar Birdwatchers Association, international birdwatchers and other organizations help with registrations in the Mandalay Region. (Translated by Zaw Htet Oo)