The Delta Birding Festival gains fame as an essential bird-watching event, and it keeps growing despite the rain
Despite the rain this weekend, the Delta de l’Ebre became the hub of the bird-watching world with the sixth edition of the international bird-watching festival.
The Festival presented a wide range of more than 100 activities for all audiences, and this year’s focus was dealing with waste.
The line-up of the Delta Birding Festival included a series devoted to the presence of plastics in the sea, as well as Nina O’Hanlon, an expert in marine bird ecology, who attested to the problem of plastics in seas all over the world. Struck by the magnitude of the problem, O’Hanlon is studying the impact of plastic waste in marine birds from an analytical perspective, but also with a desire to solve the problem.
One of the most successful activities was the exhibition of artwork made with recycled materials which were created over the three days of Delta Birding. MónNatura Delta, the festival venue, was invaded by birds made from scrap metal. A total paean to the art of recycling by the young self-taught artist Luca García.
This year, art and bird lovers were lucky because they were able to enjoy live graffiti painting every day. The artist Roc Blackblock showed how an art form with thoroughly urban roots like graffiti can be masterfully applied to the theme of bird-watching.
The Delta Birding Festival is the only festival in Spain which earmarks the proceeds from its tickets to bird conservation projects. This year for the first time, the Festival-goers themselves were able to choose the winning project among all the finalists. The Egyptian vulture project garnered the most votes. The funds raised will be allocated to the census, reproductive success and indeed the very survival of this bird. The goal is to improve our knowledge of the species’ demographics and state of conservation.
As always, the Festival had a line-up featuring talks with world-renowned speakers like Tim Birkhead, the British professor who knows everything about bird eggs, and Magnus Robb, an expert in recording sounds, specifically the calls of nocturnal migrating birds. It also featured other great ornithologists and naturalists from Spain, like Jaume Sañé, Eduard Durany and Sergi Garcia.
The activity, which lasted from Friday 20 to Sunday 22 September, included a wide range of activities and workshops for all ages: boat rides, bird releases, lectures, exhibitions and more, all held at the educational space at MónNatura Delta. A team from the Catalunya La Pedrera Foundation organised the Festival along with Oryx and the Catalan Ornithological Institute (ICO).
The most important bird-watching festival in the Mediterranean gains ground and continues to grow thanks to its ability to attract more than 2,500 people.