CMS COP13 side event: Veterinary drugs and the Vulture MsAP: A call for wider action

The location on the map is approximate!

This side event was held during the 13th CMS Conference of the Parties (CMS COP13) in Gandhinagar, India on 18 February 2020. Vultures featured prominently in many of the discussions at CMS COP13 including this event focused on the threat of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) to vultures.

The use of veterinary NSAIDs has devastated Asian vulture populations in recent years. The Multi-species Action Plan to Conserve African-Eurasian Vultures (Vulture MsAP) provides a strategic conservation plan covering all 15 species of migratory African-Eurasian vultures and has called for the withdrawal and replacement of veterinary use of NSAIDs that are known to be toxic for vultures. This side event highlighted the growing importance of the threat of NSAIDs on vulture populations and encouraged the prompt implementation of Vulture MsAP actions.


Key Messages

  • Indian Government CMS Focal Point, Inspector General of Forests Mr Soumitra Dasgupta, highlighted the Indian Government's commitment to removing toxic NSAIDs from the environment, as well as for the breeding and release programme, once the environment is sufficiently safe.
  • Vibhu Prakash (BNHS India) outlined the history of declines and the key role of NSAIDs.
  • Raquibul Amin (IUCN Bangladesh) described how the Bangladesh Government has officially gazetted Vulture Safe Zones and has started implementing regional (soon to be made national) bans of ketoprofen and aceclofenac.
  • Mohamed Shobrak of Saudi Arabia and Vulture MsAP Middle East coordinator highlighted efforts of several countries including Saudi Arabia and Oman where steps are underway to ban diclofenac.
  • Chris Bowden (SAVE and RSPB) who chaired the session commended the recent steps by Cambodia and Iran to ban veterinary diclofenac.
  • Peter Cook, Deputy UK High Commissioner, added that he was pleased that the UK Government had been able to support early initiatives to address the NSAIDs threat, and highlighted the importance of SAVE in effectively engaging such a broad set of partners.
  • Juan Carlos Atienza (SEO/BirdLife) from Spain reinforced how irresponsible it is that several European Governments had licenced veterinary diclofenac more recently, and especially for Spain where the main European vulture populations are, this must urgently be reversed.



Veterinary drugs and the Vulture MsAP: A call for wider action
(Chris Bowden, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds)

(Chris Bowden, Royal Society for the Protection of Birds)


Panel during COP13 side event

Left to right: Chris Bowden (SAVE, RSPB), Vibhu Prakash (BNHS India),  Peter Cook (Deputy UK High Commissioner), Raquibul Amin (IUCN Bangladesh), Mohamed Shobrak (Saudi Wildlife Authority), Juan Carlos Atienza (SEO/BirdLife) (Photo credit: SAVE)


Indian Govt Inspector General speaking at COP13 Side Event

Mr Soumitra Dasgupta (Inspector General of Forests, Ministry of Environment and Forest, India) speaking at the side event (second left). (Photo credit: SAVE)

18 Feb 2020 13:45 to 18 Feb 2020 14:30
OrganisateurCoordinating Unit of the Raptors MOU
CoorganizerRoyal Society for the Protection of Birds
Instrument de la CMSOiseaux de Proie (Rapaces)
LieuMahatma Mandir Convention and Exhibition Centre