Familiar Chat Back Issues-October 2013

Welcome to the Familiar Chat! Since the last edition, we have had three bird walks – methinks the mornings were too cold for most sensible birds, but we did see much to interest us. By being a member of BirdLife and learning more about birds, you are part of an international community, expressing your commitment to helping conservation efforts all over the world. Birds don’t recognise international borders. Efforts being made to protect our migratory birds in Europe are highlighted, but recent information indicates we have our own problems in and around Botswana, with Grey Louries being found dead and accidental poisoning being suspected. Hundreds of vultures were deliberately poisoned in the Caprivi Strip area. Many pelicans have been found dead in the Savuti area. – indiscriminate use of pesticides is a possible cause. Rachel Carson first brought the possibility of a “Silent Spring” to our attention over 50 years ago. Progress has been made but we still need to be vigilant. International companies take advantage of marketing opportunities in less aware countries. BLB Director Kabelobelo Senyatso is negotiating with senior Government officials and Ministers to increase awareness and change policy in Botswana. His intention is to get the offending chemicals ‘off the shelves’ and to find sponsorship to initiate a programme with staff to monitor the situation. (Read more on p2) We need a WAKE UP call…….. Please start thinking about contributions (written or photographic) for the next edition and send them NOW! Janet (modirelo6811@gmail.com).

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