The Small Flycatchers Israeli Youth Team

Logo flycatchers
We are a group of keen birders:

All team members are guides, or former guides of the SPNI’s Youth Birding-Clubs. In fact, in this group we join forces of three generations of the birding clubs- Amir was a member himself and later Yael’s guide; Yael is guiding the incredibly promising youngsters: Ma’ayan, Shalev, Iris and Moran.

Our passion for birding is a key feature and we wish to sweep the Negev Desert in search for both migrants and local birds. Speaking of local birds… three of the group members live in Midreshet Ben-Gurion so we count on some home field advantage.

Our strategy is taken from the Red-breasted Flycatchers – to stay alert constantly, to look for every slight movement or rustle, and to be a delightful surprise for every birder ☺

Overall, we wish that all migratory birds flying over would be safe, here and elsewhere.

This is why we are participating and this is why we ask you to help us to help the birds!

Simply, press the button “Donate here” and add your donation to the growing pile of money. This will directly help the
Quails and other birds passing through Croatia & Serbia, which are now being hunted massively.

Just for perspective- Amir remembers thousands of Quails when birding during migration in Israel, Yael remembers tens of them in a good migration day but the youth members of the groups have rarely seen a single Quail in a full birding day. It is devastating! If we don’t so something then when Ma’ayan, Shalev, Iris and Moran will be guiding they wouldn’t be able to show Quails to the future members of the Birding-Clubs. We need your help now, when it is still possible to save them!

Watch Amir’s video for more about Quails hunting:

We are grateful for the support of Victor Emanuel Nature Tours!

Meet the Team:

Ma’ayan Goberman

I’m 16 years old, I Love nature for as long as I can remember.

I study in the environmental school in Sde Boker and basically live in the desert in my everyday life. My favorite bird is Desert Finch and among the usual champions sites I like K20-salt ponds the most. This is my second run in the race and I hope to see as many birds as possible, even more than last time.

Shalev Nisan

I’m 15 years old, from Alon Shvut. I’ve always loved birds and nature and I’m in the birding world about 3 years. It started when my brother bought me a field guide for plants and I understood that there is also Birds field guide so I became curious. After some months I bought the Birds field guide too, and I was impressed by the huge variety of bird species, And I started birding!

This is my second year participating in the Champions of the Flyway and I can’t wait for it. Nothing is better than fun birding experience while also raising money to help and save birds! And this time I believe we’ll find even more species than in the previous year…

Iris Gorin

I’m 16 years old, from Jerusalem.

I first discovered the nature and birding world in 4th grade, and I’m a birder and a ringer since my 7th grade. Most of the time I’m birding in Jerusalem, but I never refuse to a trip outside of the city.

This will be my second year participating in Champions of The Flyway and I’m sure I will enjoy every moment.

Moran Laloya

I’m 14 years old, from Kibbutz Revivim.

This is my fourth year as a birder and the second year that I participate in “Champions of the fly way” competition. This year I am participating in order to emphasize the conservation of the variety of birds not only in the Negev desert but also in the rest of the world.

Amir Balaban

Leading youth groups already from the first race. A birder and guide in every possible way, the director of the municipal nature department and the director of the Jerusalem Bird Observatory. The race for him is a celebration of birding and an opportunity for a close encounter with the young birders (they may no longer enjoy Amir’s guiding every week but they are taking advantage of the race to catch up).

Yael Lehnardt

Coordinator of Birdwatching clubs for Children and Youth – the link between the present and the former Jerusalem youth club where I was guided by Amir Balaban (in the early 2000s together with the Gidon Perlman and Shai Agmon). After years of birdwatching with the Jerusalem Bird Watching Club, I enjoy being on the other side, being the coordinator of the youth groups for four years so far. In the last year I moved to the Midreshet Ben-Gurion. It means getting closer to the race area – giving us a bit of a home field advantage.