World Migratory Bird Day

Quick Facts - AU

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2024 Date11 May 2024
2025 Date11 October 2025

World Migratory Bird Day

World Migratory Bird Day in
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World Migratory Bird Day History

World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) serves as an annual awareness-raising campaign aimed at highlighting the need for the conservation and celebration of migratory birds and their habitats. Established in 2006, WMBD brings together various organizations, governments, and wildlife enthusiasts across the globe, to encourage and reinforce cooperation in conserving these birds and their ecosystems.

Australia is home to a diverse range of migratory bird species, many of which travel vast distances each year through various migratory routes, known as flyways. Some Australian birds use the East Asian-Australasian Flyway, which connects breeding grounds in the Arctic and sub-Arctic to non-breeding areas in the southern hemisphere. Over the years, factors such as habitat loss, climate change, and human intervention have posed significant threats to migratory birds, making the celebration of WMBD in Australia essential to raise public awareness and promote conservation action.

World Migratory Bird Day is observed on two peak migratory periods each year, the second Saturday in May and the second Saturday in October. The timing ensures maximum global participation, as migratory birds can be seen moving between the northern and southern hemispheres during this period. In Australia, the event typically includes birdwatching activities, educational programs, and public outreach campaigns, which aim to increase the understanding and appreciation of migratory birds and the need to protect them.

World Migratory Bird Day facts

  • World Migratory Bird Day in 2024 will focus on highlighting the importance of insects for migratory birds, and the threats to these vital food sources.
    World Migratory Bird Day in 2023 focused on highlighting the importance of water for migratory birds while identifying key actions for protecting water resources.
  • According to Great Lakes Echo, during the fall migration season, over 4 billion birds in North America migrate towards warmer climates.
  • Many migratory birds in Australia travel incredible distances between their breeding and non-breeding habitats. Some birds, like the Arctic Tern, travel over 25,000 kilometers from the Arctic to Australia and back.
  • Migratory birds in Australia follow specific flight paths called flyways, which are essential for their survival. The East Asian-Australasian Flyway is one of the most important flyways for migratory birds traveling to and from Australia. It is used by around 5 million birds annually, including 37 shorebird species and 25 breeding species.

Top things to do in Australia for World Migratory Bird Day

  • Discover events near you. The non-profit organization Environment for the Americas (EFTA) hosts events around the world to help raise awareness about birds.
  • Visit a wetland park, such as the Tamar Island Wetlands Centre that is located in Riverside, Tasmania. The wetlands are home to several migratory bird species during their annual migration.
  • Attend a birdwatching event the BirdLife Australia festival held in Boondall, Queensland.

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