LIFE for the Lesser Kestrel participated in the 8th Congress of the Hellenic Ecological Society (HELECOS-8), which was held from 20 to 23 October 2016 at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. The congress was organized by the Hellenic Ecological Society, entitled "150+ years of Ecology: structures, dynamics and survival strategies", for the celebration of the 150th anniversary of Ecology.
A presentation was made, on behalf of the project, from mr Κ. Vlachopoulos about the use of Ηidden Markov Models for the analysis of small and large scale movements in Lesser Kestrels.
Also, two posters were presented showing the results of the project actions. The first was about the study of the Lesser Kestrel food habits during the breeding season in the Thessaly plain, whilst the second one was about the actions of artificial nests establishment at Thessaly plain.
The congress was attended by members of the Greek scientific community presenting their recent research efforts in the field of ecology, as well as foreign researchers that brought their international experience and knowledge.
A conference was held in the Velestino Town Hall on October 31st 2016 presenting the project results and outputs.
Representatives of local authorities, productive institutions and the agricultural cooperative “Rizomylos” attended the meeting.
Finally, the meeting was completed with the presentation of the documentary about the Lesser Kestrel.
LIFE project for the Lesser Kestrel has been hosted at the stand of www.ecotourism-greece.com, at the international meeting for alternative tourism in Greece - Nostos Expo that took place in Nafpaktos from 14 to 17 of October 2016.
The exhibition was a great success and it attracted a number of tourism professionals, municipalities and institutions.
LIFE for the Lesser Kestrel participated in the international Lesser Kestrel protection meeting, which was held in Plovdiv, Bulgaria, from 4 to 8 October 2016 and organized by the program LIFE11 NAT/BG/360 “Lesser Kestrel Recovery - Greater chance for Lesser Kestrel (Falco naumanni) in Bulgaria”.
Five of our experts attended the workshop and two presentations were made on behalf of our project. The first presentation was about the project’s actions and their results and the second one about the use of various telemetry methods for describing the local and migratory movements of the Lesser Kestrel in Thessaly.
Representatives and experts from NGO’s, scientific and municipal organizations and EU programs on the Lesser Kestrel, from all Balkan countries, as well as Italy, Spain, France and Ukraine, reported on the state and protection measures, that were put in force to safeguard the species in different countries.
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The Lesser Kestrel at the post office!
The project’s environmental material travels to those schools that we did not have the opportunity to visit during the last years.
We wish all the “Lesser Kestrel-students” of Thessaly the best of luck for the new school year.
The Lesser Kestrel population census was continued in 2016 in representative settlements of Thessaly plain in the framework of the project monitoring actions. In the middle of April and before the egg-laying, the project’s scientists recorded the reproductive population of the species in the villages of Thessaly. The census results will provide us with a first assessment of the conservation actions implemented in the area as well as their impact on the colony size.
Breeding Lesser Kestrel population census was also attempted to the rest of the country. Although the majority of Lesser Kestrels nest in the Thessaly plain, smallest colonies of the species in other parts of Greece are of great importance, too.
Thus, by activating the collaborators and volunteers network of HOS, many were those who volunteered to survey the Lesser Kestrel colonies, whose status is less well-known. During the next period, data analysis will give us a better view of the status of the species in the country.