Date: Saturday, 8 May 2021 (North America); 16th Anniversary.
Saturday, 9 October 2021 (South America); 16th Anniversary.
Sponsor: United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
Coordinators: UNEP/CMS Secretariat and UNEP/AEWA Secretariat
Objective: World Migratory Bird Day is proclaimed to help raise global awareness of the threats faced by migratory birds, their ecological importance, and the need for international cooperation to conserve them. It is an annual awareness-raising campaign highlighting the need for the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats.
Inception: It was observed for the first time on in 2006.
World Migratory Bird Day was initially established by the United Nations in 2006. The event was founded as an effort of the UN’s Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (UNEP-AEWA), in collaboration with the Secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), to help draw the world’s attention to the bird migration between regions of the globe and the need for their conservation. Specially, it aimed to raise awareness of the migration of nearly 350 species of migratory birds between nesting habitats in North America and non-breeding grounds in Latin America, Mexico, and the Caribbean.
Unlike other world observances, World Migratory Bird Day is celebrated twice each year since countries or regions usually observe the peak of bird migrations at different times. Officially, World Migratory Bird Day is observed on the second Saturday in May of each year in Canada and the U.S. (May 8 in 2021), and the second Saturday in October in Mexico, Central and South America, and the Caribbean (October 9 in 2021).
How to celebrate the Day
Learn, share, and actions!
Each year, people around the world take actions and organize a range of events such as bird festivals, education programmes, exhibitions, bird-watching excursions, and social media campaigns, at parks, zoos, schools, wildlife refuges, museums, libraries, and other locations, to celebrate World Migratory Bird Day.
Each year, the United Nations announces a uniting theme for the World Migratory Bird Day events to raise awareness and promote conservation actions. Each theme focuses on a different aspect of migratory birds and their conservation.
Annual theme in recent years:
2020 theme: “Birds Connect Our World.”
2019 theme: “Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution.”
2018 theme: “Year of the Bird.”
2017 theme: “Stopover Sites.”
2016 theme: “Spread Your Wings for Bird Conservation.”
2015 theme: “Restore Habitat, Restore Birds.”