Our activities focus primarily on the scientific studies on biology and ecology of the endangered species of birds, bird and wetland conservation, public educations, bird surveys related with a proposed infrastructures such as wind farming and power lines.
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In Mongolia, we have been officially implementing the School Links Programme (SLP) through the International Association for Falconry and Conservation of Birds of Prey (IAF) since April 2017. It aims to give an introduction to the ancient art of falconry to students, and to widen their knowledge on worldwide birds of prey conservation programs. The IAF SLP was originally established in 2011 to inform local communities about why 5000 artificial nests for Saker falcons were erected in Mongolia, and to explain sustainable use of falcons for falconry. ISLP is an international program that links schools from different countries. Currently, 77 secondary schools from the UAE, USA, UK, Slovakia, Netherlands, Norway, Bulgaria, Portugal, Ireland, Malta, Russia, South Africa, Poland and Mongolia (44 schools) have taken part in the programme over the last nine years. More than 4000 students are involved in programme activities every academic year. Students can communicate with each other using a dedicated blog chat as well as pen pal letters to share information about their cultures and experiences on various subjects such as nature, birds of prey, falconry heritage, geography and hobbies. Local volunteer falconers are a big part of the programme, visiting schools with their falcons, hawks or eagles and talking about falconry and delivering some of the eight units of work. Each year, we deliver outreach work in Mongolia by organizing school field trips to the artificial nests, discussing conservation issues and diverse falconry heritage with our students such as the big problem in Mongolia with the electrocution of birds of prey on poorly insulated power lines and illegal trappers. Mongolian schools have set up falconry clubs at their schools where they organize activities relating to birds of prey, conservation, and falconry heritage and its techniques. During the programme activities, we cooperate with Mongol and Kazakh falconers to engage them in spreading Falconry heritage to younger generations. Here is a list of some of the main activities of the ISLP:
World Falconry Day Celebration on the 16th of November which is recognised by UNESCO as Falconry heritage day.
International Falconry Festival- it is held once every three years in the United Arab Emirates. We announced a competition regarding Falconry heritage between the schools participating in the ISLP program. The best student creations were chosen and the students were awarded an opportunity to freely attend the festival. In 2017, 4 students from Ulaanbaatar city, Dornogovi and Dundgovi province successfully attended the 4th International Falconry Festival in UAE. The next festival is announced to be held in 2021, we are also planning to give such opportunities for ISLP students to learn diverse Falconry heritage and spread their own national and cultural heritage to the other young falconers from different countries.