The World Working Group on Birds of Prey and Owls

B.-U. Meyburg & R. D. Chancellor (eds.) 1994

Raptor Conservation Today

Proceedings of the lV World Conference on Birds of Prey and Owls

WWGBP, Berlin, London and Paris

ISBN 1-873403-33-X,   799 pp., many diagrams, maps, line drawings and photographs


"This huge volume forms the proceedings of the Fourth World Conference on Birds of Prey and Owls, organized by the World Working Group on Birds of Prey and Owls. This conference was held in Berlin in 1992 and was attended by more than 500 delegates from many parts of the world, including 15 countries in the former Soviet Union. Of the 240 oral and poster presentations, 100 have been published in these proceedings (in English). The volume itself covers an enormous diversity of material and touches on most aspects of contemporary raptor biology and conservation. with papers grouped in the following categories: population studies (nine papers), rare and declining raptors (23), tropical rain forest raptors (ten), trapping, marking and radio-tagging (ten), biology and conservation of large falcons (six), reintroductions (six), population ecology of owls (nine), rare and little-known owls (four), systematics and taxonomy (five) and environmental contaminants (17).

As expected with such broad coverage and contributions from a wide range of authors, the papers themselves are enormously variable, from accounts of species status in little known regions to detailed research papers, full of original data, that would fit comfortably in a refereed journal. They include several long-term studies on European and African raptor species. Particularly new material is included in papers describing the latest technology in linking radio-tracking with Geographic Information Systems (GIS), phylogenetic relationships among falcon species based on DNA technology, DNA fingerprinting of Eleanora's Falcons Falco eleonorae and new data on the effects of different contaminants on birds.

In short, the volume gives a good cross-sectional indication of current survey, research and conservation work on birds of prey, worldwide, by both amateurs and professionals. Considering the range of authors and topics involved, the editors and session leaders have done an excellent job of producing such a large readable volume so soon after the meeting."

Ian Newton  (Review in The Ibis 137, 1995, p. 449)


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