Warsaw Woodpeckers

logoThe Warsaw Woodpeckers is the story of two young birders from Warsaw, Poland who spend their weekends and free time from school birding in and around the capital and further afield. From their commitment and passion for birding, grew an increasing awareness of the threats to bird species in this part of Europe and a need to promote a better understanding of these threats. Each year Milosz and Tymon travel to the Hel peninsula in northern Poland to watch migrating raptors cross the Baltic Sea. Whilst this is always a wonderful experience, the boys had always dreamt of witnessing migration on a larger scale. Miłosz and Tymon recently joined forces with three equally passionate adults in order to participate in Champions of the Flyway 2020.
As the ‘Warsaw Woodpeckers’, they will be the first (hopefully of many!) Polish team to be participating in COTF! They hope to bring this incredible and inspirational event, as well as the plight of migratory birds, to the attention of more people in Poland. Warsaw Woodpeckers are entering Champions of the Flyway 2020 to raise money for the conservation of the Steppe Eagle in Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. This majestic species, which appears on the flag of Kazakhstan and is the national bird of Egypt, has suffered severe declines in recent years due mainly to habitat loss, collisions with powerlines, diclofenac poisoning and persecution. These declines are still reversible, but we need your help.
Please consider donating to our justgiving page, or that of another team, and you too will be a flyway champion!

Meet the Team:

Tymon Świtała

Tymon is 12 years old and lives in Warsaw. He is passionate about observing, photographing and painting birds. He loves being in the field, watching birds in their habitats, especially along the Vistula river, the Baltic coast and in various national parks. Tymon loves looking for rarities and has seen over 280 species in Poland including birds such as the American herring gull, ring-billed gull and sooty shearwater. The last 4 years have seen him participate in ringing camps all over the country that have helped him gain valuable knowledge of birds in the hand. He would like to become an ornithologist/ecological educator and be involved in conservation work in the future.

Milosz Cousens

Milosz is 14 years old and passionate about nature, especially birds and dragonflies and is a committed, young advocate for environmental protection. Milosz’s passion for birds began at a very early age whilst watching wildlife documentaries and later with a field guide to the Birds of East Africa. He has been observing and drawing birds since this time and loves exploring the various biodiverse sites on his doorstep in Warsaw and going on trips further afield. He is a keen user and regional reviewer for eBird in Poland. He has participated in a number of ringing camps, organized various bird walks at his school and together with Tymon, guides in his spare time for a Polish nature tours company.

Maciej Kowalski

Maciej is a nature lover whose main interest in birds has been a passion since the age of 8. This passion has defined his choice of lifestyle and he has worked as an ornithologist for several Polish national parks, government and scientific institutions and bird protection organizations. He has also worked on projects for the protection of bats, amphibians and insects. Maciej also takes a keen interest in butterflies and dragonflies. He is an experienced traveller with more than 25 nature trips to 5 continents under his belt. He is the founder and head of the Opole ornithological group dedicated to the birds of his hometown. He records his birding adventures in his blog, ‘Birdaholic Diary’. He shares his passion with his girlfriend through, ‘Ornithoholics’, their joint-project promoting nature observation, nature tourism and ecological education.

Arek Świtała

Arek is a photographer and camera-operator who graduated from the Polish National Film School in Poznan. Whilst Arek was responsible for his son’s interest in photography, it was Tymon who inspired his father to take up birding. In Arek’s spare time, father and son look for birds in the Warsaw area and further afield. Last year, Arek visited Israel and was amazed by the diversity in bird species and habitats so he knew it would only be a matter of time before he returned.

Paweł Pstrokoński

Paweł is a birder, keen cyclist and environmental activist from Warsaw. He currently lives in Tel Aviv where he is working on a book on urban birds (for the Polish publisher, ‘Czarne’). In his free time, when he’s not cycling or birdwatching, he enjoys listening to music, reading books and following NBA matches.