Champions of the Flyway 2016

Help us protect birds of the Mediterranean flyway. Grab a team and enter the race!

The 2017 Champions of the Flyway race was officially kicked off at Rutland BirdFair in August. This unique event brings unprecedented international cooperation to help combat the problem of illegal killing of birds in the Mediterranean flyways.

Champions of the Flyway: a bird race with a difference

    1. We celebrate the miracle of migration and the joy of sharing outstanding birding experiences.
    2. We operate on a global scale.  Millions of birders from every corner of the world participate – either by racing in person or by following events live online.
    3. Teams generate funding that results in direct conservation action for birds in the Mediterranean flyway

As race teams tweet their sightings in real time, anyone, anywhere in the world can follow the race live on Twitter, or on this website, and participate virtually, cheering their favourite team on to victory.

Everyone can be a Flyway Champion! Here’s how:

Enter a team

Our teams represent a wide range of individuals and brands and the race is open to all who register to take part.  The event is great fun and you will be raising money to protect the same migrants you so often travel to see. If you want to join us in Eilat this spring, please don’t delay. Registration is still open but places are limited so you need to register now.

Sponsor a team

Many of our race teams enjoy the support of commercial sponsors. Some participants are young birders with limited resources, others are would-be fundraisers from small, cash-strapped non-profit organisations. All could really use your support as a team sponsor! If you are interested in providing them a leg up please contact us here. 

Make a donation

Every team that participates raises conservation funding from their friends and contacts. Here are the team pages where you can see who is racing, who you might like to support and how to make a donation to their fundraising page. All teams are in competition to see who will raise the most to stop the illegal killing of birds in 2016.

Follow us on Twitter and Facebook   #COTF2016

Set your sites on Race Day – 28th March, 2017

2016 Champions of the Flyway results

I am a Flyway Chamption

The Champions of the Flyway is an innovative and exciting bird race for conservation.

Big days and Bird-a-thons are known from various places worldwide. These events draw a lot of attention and add a competitive spin on birding that appeal to large crowds. The idea behind the Champions of the Flyway is to utilize the “buzz” that is generated from a large scale Bird race towards conservation and fundraising actions.

Following a successful start in 2014 the project is now well established and in only 3 years has already raised close to $180,000 for conservation. The Champions focuses on the biggest threat migrating birds face today, illegal killing on migration. In previous years we have worked on projects in Georgia, Malta, Cyprus and Greece. The 2016 race highlighted the illegal killing in Greece and together with the Hellenic Ornithological Society (HOS) we were able to raise over $70,000 to combat the illegal killing of birds.

The 2016 Champions of the Flyway race was well attended and impressive. Over 30 teams from 12 nationalities assembled in Eilat in late March 2016 and went head to head in attempt to log as many species as possible during a 24 hour period. The teams combed the deserts of Southern Israel during the peak of the spring migration, shared information and reached out to their crowds, all in attempt to raise money and awareness to the widespread illegal hunting of birds along the migration routes.

Following a hectic day of birding the Zeiss Arctic Redpolls from Finland were crowned champions, having seen a whopping 174 species in 24 hours! For more information about the 2016 race and additional award winners read here:

View full results and standings


Official 2016 Champions of the Flyway Anthem.

Cover ROB

The 2017 Conservation Cause: Illegal hunting and trapping of songbirds in TURKEY.

DD logoWe are proud to announce the new conservation cause for 2017. This year we have chosen to work with Doğa Derneği (Birdlife in Turkey) focusing once again on the illegal killing of birds on migration.Doğa Derneği have proposed several projects all aiming to deal with illegal persecution of migrant birds. Because of its geographic location Turkey is a natural choice and it give us great pleasure to be able to work together to protect birds that share the East Mediterranean flyway. In the upcoming weeks we will provide more information on the specific projects, our goals and the actions that will be taken to hopefully make a change on the ground.

For more information about  Doğa Derneği, click here:

Together we CAN make a difference for the birds of the Mediterranean flyways!

Cooperating with shepherds to protect Egyptian Vultures.

And bring international attention and funding to this important conservation dilemma

Involving the locals in Great Bustard research.

לוגו-פסטיבלאילת-נקיוגדול_1430237748The Champions of the Flyway bird race is staged as part of the Eilat Bird Festival by The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (BirdLife’s national Partner in Israel) and is a BirdLife International Migratory Birds & Flyways Programme initiative.

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