On 28 November 2001, in a ceremony hosted
by Austria, the Minister for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment
and Water Resources of the Republic of Austria, Mag. Wilhelm
Molterer, and the Minister of the Environment of the Slovak
Republic, Mr. László Miklós, signed the Memorandum of Understanding
(MoU) on the Conservation and Management of the Middle-European
Population of the Great Bustard (Otis tarda), in Untersiebenbrunn,
Lower Austria, close to the Austrian-Slovak border.
(Slovakia), Mr. Müller-Helmbrecht (Executive
Secretary CMS) and Minister Molterer (Austria).
photo: Mag. Nicolaus Drimmel,
On this occasion both the Austrian and Slovak
Ministers underpinned the importance of a cooperative and
coordinated approach in the conservation of the Great Bustard
and a sound management of the habitat on which it depends.
The Ministers expressed their satisfaction with the cooperation
which had taken place between the responsible experts in
government, the regions, communities and non-governmental
organisations of Austria, Hungary and the Slovak Republic.
They acknowledged the joint efforts to recover the existing
populations of Great Bustard in the entire area of western
Slovakia, western Hungary and eastern Austria. Mr. Müller-Helmbrecht,
the Executive Secretary of CMS, explained that with these
two signatures and the upcoming signature by Albania, two-thirds
of the main Range States of the Middle-European population
of Great Bustard will have signed the MoU before the end
of 2001. He expressed his satisfaction that at least two
sub-populations of the Great Bustard, one of which is shared
by Austria, Hungary and Slovakia, have developed extremely
well in the past ten to twelve years. He expressed hope
that this experience in habitat management may serve as
a model for similar activities in other regions/parts of
the range. He acknowledged the extremely positive and successful
work of the experts of WWF Austria and the Pannonian Association.
One of the products of their work, the Action Plan for the
conservation of the Great Bustard in Austria, was presented
by Dr. G. Dick, of WWF Austria in the presence of some of
the other authors (Dr. Hans-Peter Kollar, and Mag. Stefan
Raab). The Executive Secretary also noted that BirdLife
International, the World Conservation Union (IUCN) and the
International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation
(CIC) signed the MoU last year as "associated partners".
The Ministers present endorsed the continued need for cooperation
and coordination between all the actors in the Great Bustard's
For further information please contact:
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