Filling Gaps in the Protection of Spoonbills in Europe

An international workshop for the protection of spoonbills took place from 25 to 30 September 2012 in the Nature Reserve of the Marshes of Santoña in northern Spain. Many partners of EuroNatur took part. A short movie of the workshop shows what successes have already been achieved in the protection of the spoonbills and which challenges still have to be met.

Bird hunters are waiting for the spoonbills in resting areas along the Adriatic Coast.

© Davorka Kitonic

Around 35 scientists and representatives from nature conservation organisations from Europe, Africa, and Asia got together in Arnuera, a village on the Spanish North coast in the Nature Reserve of the Marshes of Santoña. They discussed the current situation of the protection of spoonbills and possible solutions to upcoming problems. Presentations for example compared the Atlantic and the Adriatic Flyway, both of which are used by European spoonbills migrating to the south for the winter months. It was shown that birds from Central and Northern Europe use the Adriatic Flyway over the Balkans and are often threatened by illegal bird hunting, whereas populations from Western Europe using the Atlantic Flyway over France and Spain do not face these problems. Thanks to intensive protection campaigns during the past years, spoonbills and other migratory birds find enough resting areas on their journey along the Atlantic Flyway.

These conditions are represented in the number of spoonbills in different parts of Europe. While the spoonbill population increases in Western Europe, the number of birds continually decreases in eastern parts of Europe. In the final declaration of the workshop, participants therefore concluded that it is necessary to improve bird protection along the Adriatic Flyway.

A person highly committed to the protection of European migratory birds was EuroNatur project manager Dr. Martin Schneider-Jacoby, who passed away in August 2012. In recognition of his great achievements in the protection of spoonbills, participants of the workshop installed a memorial tablet on the ecomuseum of Santoña Nature Reserve.

Click here to watch the short movie of the workshop

How you can help


Future needs nature. EuroNatur cares for it. Please use your possibilities to help. With your donation you will make an effective contribution to a more livable environment.

Sustaining membership

EuroNatur focuses on long-term nature conservation projects instead of quick fixes. With your regular donations, you give us the planning security we need.


Skavica mega dam: Albanian court to scrutinise special law for U.S. contractor Bechtel

++ Constitutional complaint filed by NGOs accepted for trial ++ First milestone in fight against one of Europe’s largest reservoirs ++ Thousands of…

Growing opposition to Albanian airport

++ Bern Convention calls on Albania to stop airport construction near Narta Lagoon ++ Project in Vjosa Delta endangers thousands of migratory birds ++…

EU Commission targets the wolf

Ursula von der Leyen warns of allegedly "dangerous wolves" - nature conservation organisations criticise misleading statements and dubious data…

Romanian forests: EuroNatur calls for a logging moratorium

+++ Open letter to Commissioner Sinkevičius calls for a logging moratorium in protected areas to end destruction of Romanian forests +++ Fourth…

Controversial airport construction in Albanian protected area casts shadow as far as Munich

++ Operating company Munich Airport International (MAI) is linked to illegal Vlora airport ++ Construction to take place in protected area of special…

Swimming for the monk seal

The Croatian free water swimmer Dina Levačić has been swimming in potential monk seal territories. Her campaign is aimed at drawing attention to the…

Wolf Offspring confirmed in the Black Forest

++ Photo trap image from the community of Schluchsee provides evidence of offspring ++ First wolf pack in over 150 years in Baden-Württemberg ++

Stork Village meeting in Tykocin, Poland

It was an anniversary celebrated in style: For the 20th annual meeting, representatives of the European Stork Villages met for the first time in the…

A slight sigh of relief for the Dalmatian pelicans

The Dalmatian pelicans at Lake Skadar are breeding successfully. This is all the more gratifying because last year's breeding season was disastrous.

Learning to live with bears

Preventing conflicts between people and wild animals

Urgent Call for Action to Protect Romania's Forests and Natura 2000 Sites

A recent report by EuroNatur and Agent Green provides new evidence on logging in Romania's protected areas. Nature conservation organisations call for…

Airport construction threatens Albanian bird paradise

++ Construction work for airport in Narta Lagoon continues unabated despite significant protests ++ Resting area is internationally important for…

Disappointing results of last trilogue on Renewable Energy Directive

++ Woody biomass and hydropower can continue to count towards renewable energy targets ++ No will for sustainable climate policy in the EU in sight ++

Major success: River Vjosa becomes National Park

++ Today the Vjosa River in Albania has been proclaimed Europe’s first Wild River National Park ++ EuroNatur, Riverwatch and many other partners have…

More Ski Resorts Planned Around Syvdovets

In 2016, the Transcarpathian Regional State Administration announced its plans to build a ski resort of the same name in the Svydovets mountain…