Name of organisation
Mongolian Bird Conservation Center
The Chukh Bird Research Station (CBRS) is funded through the savings and resources of the Mongolian Bird Conservation Center (MBCC), which coordinates the station's activities. MBCC does not receive direct funding for CBRS, but instead relies on its own internal resources to support the station's research and conservation efforts.
Number of staff
Number of visitors per year
The estimated annual number of visitors to our Chukh Bird Ringing Station in Eastern Mongolia during the spring and autumn migration seasons is approximately 250. This includes local and international visitors, tourists, researchers, rangers, students, and teachers from high school and local communities.
Overall aims of the centre
The main aim of the CBRS is to carry out long-term and sustainable monitoring of breeding and migratory shorebirds population of Chukh lake in Daurian landscape, and to conduct ecological and biological studies of the lake and its biodiversity. In addition, CBRS will become an international ecological research station in East-Asia.
Description of the centre
Mongolian Bird Conservation Center (MBCC) is established in 2015 and one of the main strengths of the organization is the extensive experience in multi-faceted bird research that is possessed by our scientists and researchers. Our mission is to create tools and research that shape new solutions to the challenges of sustainable development, and to make a clear contribution to the understanding and preservation of national avian species and their habitat resources through implementing scientific research and conservation activities. MBCC is staffed by experienced scientists and researchers, including ornithologists, biologists, ecologists, and geographers.
The Chukh Bird Research Station (CBRS) is under the coordination of the Mongolian Bird Conservation Center (MBCC). It is located in the buffer zone of the Landscape of Daurian World Heritage Site and is approximately 750 km from the capital city of Mongolia. The station is located on the north side of Chukh Lake, which has a 2.43 km2 surface area and a 5.9 km shoreline length. The main objective of CBRS is to conduct long-term, sustainable monitoring of the breeding and migratory shorebirds population of Chukh Lake. The station also conducts ecological and biological studies on its biodiversity and migratory shorebirds, cranes, raptors, passerines, reed-nesting passerines, passerines along the Ulz River, and the lake water.
The CBRS provides hands-on field training opportunities for students and local specialists, and supports Bachelor, master's and doctoral research theses for young researchers. The station also promotes science-based environmental knowledge for local communities and celebrates based World Environment and Biodiversity days. The Chukh Bird Research Station (CBRS) organized Mongolia's first ever shorebird festival in 2022 at Chukh Lake. The station is striving to continue to organize the festival in the future.
Each year, the station is estimated to receive approximately 250 visitors, including local and international visitors, researchers, herders, rangers, students, and teachers.
Main CEPA work area
The station provides hands-on field training opportunities for students and local specialists. To raise awareness, the station conducts activities that engage and educate local people, herders, rangers, students, and teachers.
Top three successes
1. Wetland conservation along the Ulz River in north eastern Mongolia using White-naped Crane as umbrella funded by Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.
The aim of the project is to investigate livestock impacts on wetland using GSM tags on livestock and nesting cranes. Based results will be elaborated grazing management plan for livestock combined with development of birdwatching tourism and outreach programme to nomadic herders and a local conservation community. It will be a case project and the recommendations will be extended to other wetland areas along the Ulz River in the further.
This project was successful because of its focus on investigating the impact of livestock on wetlands, its implementation of grazing management plans, and its development of birdwatching tourism and outreach programs. The results showed that the home range of livestock and the nesting cranes changed during the year, with June being the most sensitive period for incubating nesting cranes. The project also re-established the local conservation community, which was important for implementing the project's recommendations and developing a management plan. The Chukh training, research, and information center was also found to be important for informing and serving local and internal tourists.
2. Contribution of Chukh bird research station:
The CBRS has carried out long-term monitoring of shorebirds and cranes, as well as ecological and biological studies of the lake and its biodiversity. The station also provides hands-on field training opportunities for students and local specialists and supports research for young researchers. It also promotes science-based environmental knowledge for local people. At present, 2 students have defended their bachelor's degrees through research, and in the coming years 2 bachelor's, 3 master's, and 1 doctoral studies are underway.
3. Surveys of Cranes along the Kherlen and Ulz Rivers, Eastern Mongolia: 2018-2022
The results of the surveys conducted along the Kherlen and Ulz rivers in Eastern Mongolia between 2018 and 2022 indicated that habitat loss is a significant threat to crane species. Mitigation strategies such as fencing of nest sites, improved wetland management, and raising public awareness among the herder families living near the rivers can help preserve the crane population. Our efforts, including the construction of fences, have already led to increased breeding success of the cranes in some areas. The 2021 survey recorded a higher number of breeding White-naped Crane pairs along the Kherlen and Ulz rivers compared to the 2019 survey, which may also be attributed to favorable rainfall conditions.
Top three challenges
We are working to make the CBRS an international station for research at the ecosystem level of the Daurian landscape. Of course, this requires a lot of time and money. For this purpose, we need to expand international cooperation.
One of the main challenges in our research is the overgrazing of pasture and wetlands. The whole of Mongolia is severely affected by drought, and especially during dry years, local people graze their livestock into wetlands and destroy them. Proper use of pastures and improving the quality of livestock are difficult, time-consuming tasks, and require cooperation with local people.
Creating signage; site information; Producing written materials; Developing nature trails
Managing / creating habitat; Running a visitor centre
Engaging hard-to-reach groups; Engaging young people; Engaging the local community; Working with volunteers
Education and communication
Early years education; Delivering adult education; Working with primary schools; Working with secondary schools; Developing resources / materials
Health and safety; Fund-raising; Project planning.
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