Research and monitoring for and with raptors in Europe
May 2010 - May 2015

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EURAPMON Aim and Objectives
 
The aim of EURAPMON is to strengthen the contribution of research and monitoring for and with raptors in Europe to delivery of biodiversity, environmental and human health benefits, including maintenance and recovery of raptor populations and their habitats, and reduced chemicals threats to ecosystem and human health.
 
EURAPMON’s objectives are:

  1. to establish a sustainable and resource-efficient Europe-wide network for monitoring for and with raptors, linked to international networks;
  1. to establish consensus on Europe-wide priorities for monitoring for and with raptors, based on comprehensive inventory of existing monitoring and of needs of key users (policy makers, risk assessors, environmental managers);
  1. to spread best practices and build capacities in Europe for harmonized monitoring for and with raptors; and
  1. to build a web-based database, populated with interoperable data on European raptor populations and (contaminant and other) pressures on raptors in Europe, and to produce European- and EU-scale analytical outputs which meet priority needs of users.

 
Geographical scope of EURAPMON
 
The geographical scope of EURAPMON is continent-wide, and includes Greenland, Russia to the Urals, the Caucasus and the whole of Turkey.
 
Expected outcomes of EURAPMON

  1. A sustainable and resource-efficient Europe-wide network for monitoring for and with raptors, with active engagement of most, if not all, groups involved in raptor monitoring, linked to international networks.
  1. A comprehensive inventory of existing monitoring for and with raptors in Europe, including: which species monitored; geographical areas over which monitored; scales of monitoring programmes, timeframes, periodicity; biological/ecological parameters monitored, methods; contaminants monitored, tissues sampled, methods; human resources (staff, volunteer), skills held, training needs; facilities available.
  1. A comprehensive assessment of needs of key users (policy makers, risk assessors, environmental managers), including: data required; analysis required; required periodicity of data, analyses, reports; formats information is required in; resource-efficient delivery mechanisms; assessment against these needs of extent to which they may currently be met, opportunities and costs of being better met.
  1. Achievement of broad Europe-wide consensus on priorities among participant groups, including on: priority species for monitoring for and with raptors; priority scales for monitoring; priority geographic areas; preferred periodicity for monitoring; priority parameters to monitor; priority contaminants to monitor (and priority tissues to sample); priorities for methodological harmonization/standardization; priority needs for skills, facilities; priority user-oriented outputs at European and EU scales.
  1. Best practice guidelines and protocols available on web (and possibly in print), including for: fieldwork, sampling, preparation, analyses; analytical quality assessment, quality control; data management, intercalibration, statistical approaches (e.g. power analyses of sampling strategies); reporting, etc., building on existing best practice guidance.
  1. Enhanced capacities for monitoring for and with raptors in Europe in line with best practice, in particular in those European countries currently lacking in skills and resources.
  1. An operational web-based database producing analytical outputs for users: An online database of: a) monitoring programmes and activities, b) analysed raptor population/trend data (not raw data) and c) contaminant (and other pressure) data in Europe, linked to national and participant databases. European- and EU-scale analytical outputs (e.g. on species status and trends, current and emerging contaminant hazards, indicators) to meet user needs (e.g. statutory reports under Birds Directive, chemicals assessments for REACH, assessment of effectiveness of EU biodiversity policy).
  1. Adequate funding secured to sustain the ongoing network and relevant activities beyond the ESF-funded period.

 
The origins of EURAPMON
 
EURAPMON builds on a workshop held at the Zingaro Reserve in October 2006, organised by the current EURAPMON Chair and Coordinator, within the context of the Coordinator’s European Commission Marie Curie Fellowship. The proceedings of the 2006 workshop were published in a Special Issue of Ambio in 2008 guest edited by the EURAPMON Chair and Coordinator. The workshop also generated a core set of participants for the current EURAPMON network. The EURAPMON proposal was prepared by the EURAPMON Chair and Coordinator in consultation with this core set of participants in 2007-8. EURAPMON was approved by the ESF Life and Environmental Sciences Committee in June 2009 and secured funding by end 2009, leading to the launch of EURAPMON in May 2010.
 
 
EURAPMON participants
 
EURAPMON is open to all interested participants.
 
Participants are drawn from countries having ESF member organisations, from other European countries, from third countries (e.g. USA) and from relevant international organisations, including the UNEP/CMS Secretariat, BirdLife International, MEROS and the Raptor Research Foundation.
 
EURAPMON has access to a significant proportion of leading and emerging expertise and facilities for such work in Europe. EURAPMON’s multidisciplinarity (raptor ecotoxicologists, ornithologists, ecologists, conservation biologists) will enable development of new leading-edge methods for early detection of environmental change, determination of drivers of change (with levels of certainty) and prediction of emerging problems (e.g. based on combined ecological, chemical, metabonomic and/or genomic techniques). This should effectively position raptors as sentinels of the health of European ecosystems.