Cover image: World Migratory Bird Day

World Migratory Bird Day

Twice a year, on the second Saturday of October (12th) and May (11th).

Highlighting the need to protect migratory birds and their habitats.

Updated 4 months ago

About the event

World Migratory Bird Day is a global awareness-raising campaign highlighting the need to protect migratory birds and their habitats. On the closest weekend to 10 May each year, people around the world come together in order to take action and organise public events such as bird festivals, education programmes and bird watching excursions to celebrate the Day. 

How to approach it

Migratory birds are a great illustration of global interconnectedness. The birds we see in the UK in summer may have spent the winter in warmer climes. Changes to the environment or the climate in one country can have an impact on the bird migration to another country. And laws protecting birds in one country may not exist in another. Like many global issues today, migratory birds make us consider the effectiveness of borders and global cooperation. 

First, draw students in by talking about how far migratory birds travel, what we see in the UK and the far flung places they have come from. Next, ask students to think about how we can protect them. Suggest that conserving habitats, breeding grounds and food sources are all important. This would require a coordinated effort across all the countries involved with every bird species. Show students how a collective effort is needed. You could ask: what are good ways for countries and communities to work together?

Conversation starter

What’s your favourite bird? Do you know if it's a migratory bird or not? A migratory bird is one that travels to different parts of the world at different times of year. Birds can migrate for thousands of miles, many come from Africa to the UK every year. Research how far your favourite birds travel. What's the longest migration route you can find?