On Sunday 5th April, a WLI member in the Basque Country, Spain celebrated World Wetlands Day at the Urdaibai Ornithological Centre. On a beautiful sunny day, a large number of birds were out on the marsh, creating perfect conditions for the crowds of visitors. Four hundred people came, making a record for this annual event.
Every year the celebration brings people into contact with wetlands and raises awareness of the habitat and its importance for biodiversity, in particular for the migration, wintering and breeding of European waterfowl.
Everyone who came enjoyed the spectacular views of the birds in the incredible setting of the Gautegiz Arteaga marshes. Lapwings, pintails, teal, gadwall, spoonbills and marsh harriers were among the stars of the day.
The fantastic weather allowed us to put on a scientific bird banding demonstration, which was followed enthusiastically by the visitors. We ringed many siskins, beautiful birds from Scandinavia which are wintering here. The other species we ringed were greenfinch and goldfinch. Both of these come from Central Europe.
Without doubt it was a marvellous day to enjoy the wonderful world of nature just a stone´s throw from home.