Spotlight on Bustards at CMS COP14

Bustards were in the spotlight at COP14 of the Convention on Migratory Species, held in February 2024. The host country, Uzbekistan, honored the Great Bustard as the namesake of a meeting room in Samarkand’s Silk Road conference center, at a selfie-station in the central hall, and in the nation’s opening ceremony video.

A side event, “International Cooperation for Bustard Conservation“, co-organized by the Eurasian Bustard Alliance and the Ministry of Agriculture of Hungary, and supported by the Swiss Ornithological Institute, was one of the best-attended events at the COP. The panel united speakers to present on transboundary efforts to conserve bustards in eight countries: Austria, Hungary, India, Iran, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Pakistan and Uzbekistan.

This is the fourth CMS COP at which the Eurasian Bustard Alliance has spearheaded events and discussions about the conservation of bustards. Where earlier the mention of “bustards” brought a confused look to the face of many, now these birds are increasingly recognized as charismatic symbols of sustainable landscape management, and species in urgent need of conservation action.