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Lilian’s Lovebird expedition gets underway!

Rowan Martin, PhD | May 18, 2015


This week Dr Tiwonge Gawa sets off on a two month expedition as part of a World Parrot Trust project aimed at understanding the conservation needs of Lilian’s lovebirds. Dr. Gawa, who recently won an award as a leading International Young Conservationist is heading up a team of researchers to explore little-travelled areas of the Zambezi basin. The team, which includes researchers from the University of Edinburgh, BirdWatch Zambia and The Percy FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology, want to understand the current distribution of Lilian’s lovebirds and their habitat requirements. Lilian’s lovebirds are generally considered specialists of Mopane woodlands where they roost in mature trees but this habitat is under threat in southern Africa. A key aim of the expedition is to understand the strength of the lovebird’s association with Mopane woodlands, and importantly to understand the drivers of changes to woodlands within the lovebird’s range.