Under the supervision of the National Agency for Waters and Forests – Morocco, the Marocain Association for the Protection of Raptors (AMPR as abbreviated from the French title) saved a Spanish Osprey from drowning.
The young male, born in the Guadalcacín dam and tagged in spring 2021, was trapped in a fishing net in the Oued Loukkos. It was saved thanks to the intervention of the fishermen who contacted the AMPR association because of its specialism in the conservation of raptors. As part of their PPI OSCAN 3 project, the association equipped the osprey with a GPS-GSM transmitter and released it on 7 February 2023. Thanks to the transmitter, the project will be able to obtain valuable information that will aid in the conservation of this emblematic raptor.
By placing GPS tags, this raptor protection association aims to increase the sampling that was already undertaken during the PPI OSCAN2 programme, and thus monitor the movements and causes of mortality in raptors in a large part of the country. As GPS monitoring of threatened fauna is still a fairly new practice in Morocco, the data collected and the analysis provided will make it possible to help design a conservation strategy and to propose a specific action plan, in collaboration with the sector’s various stakeholders.
Recently, GPS tracking has also enabled the association to identify two Bonelli’s eagles (Aquila fasciata) who were found electrocuted under medium voltage poles near the Oued El Maleh dam and in the Essaouira region within only a few weeks of each other.
The frequency of electrocutions as a result of collisions with poles and the common use of poles as perches by the birds, has an impact on the population density of not only Moroccan raptors, but also European populations such as Bonelli’s eagle or the Iberian Imperial eagle. The data collected by the association highlights the urgent need to implement prevention measures, like isolating the lines in the areas where large and small populations of raptors disperse and settle temporarily.
Contact of the association: firstname.lastname@example.org
This project is implemented within the third phase of the Programme of Small Initiatives for Civil Society Organizations in North Africa (PPI-OSCAN3), funded by the French Facility for Global Environment (FFEM), the MAVA Foundation, and the Foundation Sigrid Rausing Trust. This Programme aims to strengthen civil society in North Africa by supporting emerging associations wishing to tackle the new challenges of the environment and sustainable development through innovative initiatives in the region. To know more about PPI OSCAN 3 projects: Projects – MUBADARAT (mubadarat-uicn.org)