(Ecotourism) Africa: Bird watching can help eco-tourism fly high in a green economy

Selections from above news release:

* Bonn/Nairobi — Migratory birds undertake some of the most daring journeys in the animal kingdom, often covering thousands of kilometers to migrate. And the growing fan base of these winged adventurers is now presenting economic opportunities through sustainable tourism.

* On 12-13 May 2012, the economic benefits of supporting the world's migratory bird species will be one of the key themes of celebrations to mark World Migratory Bird Day 2012 (WMBD).

* Indeed, the UNEP Green Economy Report shows that global spending on all areas of ecotourism is increasing by about six times the industry-wide rate of growth.

* A survey by the United States Fish & Wildlife Service puts the annual economic value generated by bird watchers (or 'birders') and other wildlife watchers at around US$ 32 billion per year in the United States alone. This amount corresponds to the GDP of Costa Rica, which, coincidently, is a popular destination for US birders.

* Events to mark WMBD 2012 are due to take place in 70 countries, including bird festivals, education programmes, presentations, film screenings and bird watching trips, run by hundreds of volunteers and organizations. WMBD is an opportunity to both celebrate the phenomenon of bird migration and to take collective action to raise awareness on some of the threats migratory birds face.

Read full story at: http://allafrica.com/stories/201205111053.html


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