Investigating connectivity between the Lake Chivero bird systems
Lake Chivero is one of the better studied wetlands in Africa with a long history of bird population dynamics recording. Although the number of Palearctic migrant birds is smaller than in sites such as the Inner Niger Delta in Mali, Afro-tropical migrants are seasonally abundant. One interesting fact about this ecosystem is the close juxtaposition of very different poultry systems:
The potential connections between these systems and wild bird communities (including waterfowl, commensal species and other potential bridge species between different compartments) are illustrated below. The connectivity will be investigated through research on the circulation of low pathogenic strains of AI in each system. This will involve a programme of AI sampling of both wild and domestic birds at and around the lake.
Close partnerships will be forged to carry out the research and complete the sampling exercise. The main partners will be the Zimbabwean Veterinary Services, the National Parks, the Veterinary Faculty of the University of Zimbabwe, the NUST University, ostrich and poultry farmer associations and BirdLife Zimbabwe. The project will be implemented in close collaboration with the Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology (of Cape Town University), which manages a WCS-funded project that is looking at complementary research questions.
January 12th, 2010
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