BirdsCaribbean To Meet in Southern Cuba This Year

Two years ago, if you recall, BirdsCaribbean held its 20th International Conference right here in Kingston, Jamaica – attended by well over 200 scientists, conservationists, students and bird enthusiasts from across the Caribbean and beyond. It was fantastic. Now, unbelievably, two years have already passed and BirdsCaribbean will be in southern Cuba in July! This is an exciting and unusual occasion, offering a remarkable opportunity to explore the birds, habitats and landscapes, and culture of Cuba. 

Here is the BirdsCaribbean press release below, dated April 26. You can find the release online here.


BirdsCaribbean is a non-profit organization committed to conserving Caribbean birds and their habitats through education, conservation, science and action.

Cuba to Host BirdsCaribbean’s 21st International Conference 

Every two years, bird educators, scientists and conservationists from throughout the Caribbean and beyond gather for BirdsCaribbean’s International Meeting. This year’s meeting will take place in southern Cuba from 13-17 July 2017. More than 200 international delegates are expected to join dozens of Cuban delegates to share the latest in Caribbean bird science, conservation and education.

The theme for the conference is “Celebrating Caribbean Diversity.” The Caribbean is a hotspot of biodiversity, with many unique plants and animals. Birds are no exception: 172 species are found only in the Caribbean.  The Caribbean is also a cultural melting pot, home to the most diverse group of bird scientists in the world.

“BirdsCaribbean conferences have always been a place for scientists to collaborate beyond political boundaries,” said Andrew Dobson, President of BirdsCaribbean, “Bringing an international group together in Cuba is particularly exciting. We are excited to have the chance to work face-to-face with our Cuban colleagues. We are very excited to be able to give our members and partners the opportunity to experience Cuba, to meet Cuban ornithologists and conservationists, and to enhance our joint efforts to conserve birds in the Caribbean.”

The 2017 program will offer something of interest for anyone interested in conservation of Caribbean birds and their habitats. “Whether you want to share your latest findings, upgrade your skills, discuss your work with people with similar interests, or see the 26 Cuban endemic bird species, you will find an opportunity in our agenda,” explained Andrew Dobson, “We will also be supporting participation of spouses and children.”

As always, the conference will focus on the practicalities of implementing conservation backed by sound science. Featured events will start with world-famous keynote speakers talking about current issues in ornithology. There will also be training workshops, symposia and discussions on a wide range of topics including bird tourism (the Caribbean Birding Trail), bird monitoring, use of social media to promote conservation, conservation of island endemics, environmental awareness, and many other themes.

The Bee Humming Bird is the smallest bird in the world. It is endemic to Cuba. (Photo: Max Schwenne)

The conference will take place at Topes de Collantes, in the Sierra de Escambray – Cuba’s second largest mountain range and home to many unique birds. This is a fantastic opportunity to visit Cuba to learn more about the important role it is playing in conserving the biodiversity of the region, while experiencing its dynamic culture, rich and varied history and wonderful food. There will be many opportunities for exploration, including early morning bird walks, mid-conference field trips to the forests, trails and waterfalls of the Topes de Collantes protected area or to the historic town of Trinidad, as well as options for pre- or post conference field trips to see the endemic birds of Cuba and explore Havana.

“This is BirdsCaribbean’s 21st International Conference,” said Lisa Sorenson, Executive Director. “We are celebrating our anniversary by celebrating the outstanding diversity of the Caribbean in one of the most amazing places in the region. And we are expecting all those who want to get engaged in conserving that diversity to join us. Our meeting in Jamaica in 2015 was one of our best ever. Cuba is going to be even better!”

Registration for the conference is open!  Please visit the conference website for more details.  

Interested in giving a talk or presenting a poster?  Please check out the Call for Papers, we look forward to your submission.

Please also visit the Travel Support page for information about travel scholarships.

The splendid Cuban Trogon is Cuba’s National Bird. (Photo: Max Schwenne)

3 thoughts on “BirdsCaribbean To Meet in Southern Cuba This Year

  1. Very interesting conference on birds. Growing up in Jamaica I knew many species, but only by their local names. Wish I could identify them and get their proper names. Great information.


    1. You’re most welcome! We have a full meeting every 2 years. Perhaps I should do a blog post with the Jamaican local names (Baldpate, Hopping Dick etc) and the “official” names. Thanks for this idea! (I am a member of the Media Working Group of BirdsCaribbean).


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