The Czech Environment Ministry is up in arms over a decision by the Central Institute for Supervision and Testing in Agriculture allowing farmers to use a highly toxic rat poison in fields, orchards, meadows and vineyards. They claim it will “harm all living things in the vicinity”, a warning that has made the agriculture minister break off his holiday and come back to Prague for emergency talks.
A new study carried out by an international team of scientists, including experts from Palacký University in Olomouc, has ascertained that animals are not responding fast enough to the changing environmental conditions. The alarming findings have been published in the prestigious scientific journal Nature Communications.
Spring is officially in the air, and the season’s first returning white storks have already been spotted in some Czech villages, after having wintered in North Africa. In Slavic folk tradition, returning storks are not just a harbinger of spring but a good omen. And having a stork’s nest on your home or farm is thought to bring good luck. But a father-and-son team of Czech ornithologists say many myths about the birds are exactly that.
The European turtle dove has been named Bird of the Year by the Czech
The choice was aimed at reminding the public that population numbers of the once widespread migratory species have dropped dramatically over the past decades as a result of intensive farming, habitat loss and hunting.
Ornithologist estimate there are currently between 40 to 80 thousand couples of the European turtle dove living in the Czech Republic.
Over 10,000 people took part in the first ever bird census in the Czech
Republic at the weekend. The participants sent information about the birds
they had observed in their gardens and elsewhere to the website of the
Czech Ornithological Society. Volunteers registered almost a quarter of a
million birds of dozens of species.
According to preliminary results, the most reported bird was the great tit, which finished far ahead of the tree sparrow and house sparrow.
The first ever public bird census got underway in the Czech Republic on Friday. Over the course of the next three days, people can observe bird flocking on the feeders in their gardens or parks, identify the species and send the findings to the Czech Ornithological Society’s website. The purpose of the event is to discover more about the development of the country’s common birds.
The common blackbird has disappeared from about 50 percent of Czech
gardens, following the outbreak of a dangerous mosquito-carried African
bird disease in the summer of last year, the Czech Union for Nature
Conservation said on Thursday.
The blackbird, which used to be the country’s most common garden species, has become nearly extinct in Prague and Central Bohemia after being hit by the Usutu virus. The disease, which can also be transmitted to other bird species, was first detected in the country in 2011.
Shorebirds are birds commonly found along sandy or rocky shorelines, mudflats, and shallow waters all around the globe. But a study co-authored by Czech scientist Vojtěch Kubelka shows that these birds are increasingly threatened with extinction. The research, recently published in the prestigious US magazine Science, reveals a link between nest predation and climate change on a global scale, but especially in the Arctic.
The Czech Ornithological Society is urging citizens to take an active part
in international Collision Count Week starting September 24.
During the course of that week people will be able to report glass panes which present a threat to birds and thus help lower bird mortality on the continent and beyond. Reportedly tens of thousands of birds die every year after flying into glass panes.