13 September 2001

Transcription and html by Cartome

Source: Document ADA385711, U.S. Department of Commerce, National Technical Information Service (NTIS)

April 25-29, 1999, Tel-Aviv University

Migrating Birds Know No Boundaries.

Proceedings of the International Seminar on Birds and Flight Safety in the Middle East


"The Middle East is strategically located al the juncture of three continents. As a result, it is a "bottleneck" into which all or a large part of the world population of certain soaring species concentrate during spring and autumn, as well as hundreds of millions of other birds. The concentration of an extremely large mass of birds has created a severe flight safety problem for Israel Air Force aircraft and its pilots...As a resolution of this seminar it is proposed that each Air Force [of the region] will join forces with local universities as well as bird and nature conservation organizations to establish new regional working groups and work to advance regional cooperation. Yossi Leshem, Developing a Real Time Warning System in the Middle East.






Seminar Program

Some nice moments to remember

Developing a Real Time Warning System in the Middle East - From Vision to Reality
Yossi Leshem

The Royal Netherlands Air Force: Two Decades of Bird Strike Prevention "En Route"
Luit S. Buurma

Bird Flight Forecast and Information System
Harlan D. Shannon, William S. Seegar, George S. Young, Mark R. Fuller, Michael A. Yates and M. Blake Henke

Next Generation Satellite-Based Technology for Conservation and Bird Strike Science
William S. Seegar, M. Blake Henke, MntthrzvJ .Vehor. Michael Stone

The Avian Hazard Advisory System
T. Adam Kelly, Ronald Merritt, Maj .Thomas J. Donalds and Ronald L. White

Three Decades of Tracking Radar Studies on Bird Migration in Europe and the Middle East
Bruno Bruderer

Review of 100 Years of Military and Civilian Bird Strikes
John Thorpe

Aerodrome Bird Hazard Prevention: Case Study at John F. Kennedy International Airport
Richard A. Dolbeer

The Role and Value of Awareness Programs in Reducing Bird Hazards to Aircraft
Bruce Mackinnon

Conflict in the Royal Jordanian Air force
Col. Malik Salarnah Habashneh

Bird Strikes and Flight Safety in the Turkey Air Force
Maj. Muzaffer Kauci

Avifauna Management Policy of the Hellenic Air Force
Maj. General D. Athanasakos

United States Air Force Europe Bird Strike Hazard Reduction
Maj. Gerald Harris

Bird Remains Identification System (BRIS) From a Bi-National to a Global Database
Judy Shamoun-Baranes

From a Local to Regional Ground Survey Network and its Application in Flight Safety
Dan Alon Judy Shamoun-Baranes and Barak Granit

Twentv-Eight Years of Birdstrike Damage in the Israel Air Force (IAF) 1972-1999
Yossi Leshem, Yael Mandelik, Oded Ovadia, Judy Shamoun-Baranes, Eric Weisman

The United States Bird Avoidance Model (BAM)
Russell P. DeFusco

Development of a GlS-based Birds Model Migration Model for the Middle East
Judy Shamoun-Baranes

A New Technique for Studying Nocturnal Bird Migration
Adiv Gal

WSR-88D/98 Operational Capabilities and Applications, Weather and Biological Targets
Leslie R. Lemon

Factors Affecting Bird Hazards in and Around Israeli Aerodromes
Yason Weisbein and Eyal Shy

Pigeon And Crow Population Control By Trapping
Ben (Ze'ev) Foux

Summary and Action Plan

List of Participants




Coexistence Between Birds and Planes

If fish were in need of the governor's leave to swim
If birds were in need of government permits to fly
We would be left in a world without birds and without fish

Thus, freely translated, wrote Syrian poet Nizar Qabbani in one of his poems. A sea without fish? The sky without birds? Clearly, this would be terrible! A world without dimensions, without movement, without freedom? Fortunately, birds take to the skies without government permits. But planes fly by government and international license. What must we do, therefore, to prevent conflict between the free birds and the regulated airplanes?

The Israel Air Force, Tel Aviv University, and the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel are trying to bring about an amicable relationship between the two. Certainly none of us would agree to a sky without birds, just as no one would accept a world without books. And we do need planes in our daily lives, for travel and defense.

I view this seminar, initiated by Yossi Leshem and dealing at the same time with both the freedom of birds and the safety of planes, as an important step in the creation of harmony in our changing world. Nature has always been multi-faceted. But when new elements are introduced, the need to create new harmony cannot be ignored. That harmony is the subject of this book.

Shimon Peres, Minister for Regional Cooperation


Dear Participants,

In 1983, Dr. Yossi Leshem initiated a joint research project with the Israel Air Force, the Society for the Protection of Nature, and Tel Aviv University with the objective of learning about the timing, altitudes, and pathways of migrating birds.

The Israel Air Force, whose skies were "reduced" after the peace treaty with Egypt, already suffered serious damage from collisions with birds. After the training zones were reduced, the risk of serious collisions with birds increased.

The Israel Air Force adopted the research results and began applying them in 1984. The research accurately mapped the pathways and timing of soaring bird migration and the application of this knowledge has lead to a significant decrease in the number of bird collisions with military aircraft.

The International Seminar on Birds and Flight Safety will expand our knowledge, with the intention of continuing to promote the issue and minimizing bird collisions with aircraft .

Major General Eitan Ben-Eliahu
Commander of the Israel Air Force


Distinguished Guests,

I would like to convey my best wishes and appreciation to the Israeli Air Force and all seminar participants.

We would like to express our gratitude to Maj. Gen. Eitan Bem-Eliahu, Dr. Yossi Leshem, Lockheed Martin and the Israel Air Force for making it possible for us to take part in this seminar. Improving flight safety standards at all levels has always been extremely important to the Royal Jordanian Air Force, and we believe that it is an essential investment, which saves life, money and equipment.

On behalf of the Royal Jordanian Air Force, I would like to thank you for your involvement and wish you all a safe year, free of bird collisions.

Best regards to all,

Major General Muhamad Kheir Ababneh
Chief of Air Staff, Royal Jordanian Air Force



Dear Commanders, Ladies and Gentlemen,

First, on behalf of the Turkish Air Force, I greet and welcome all the participants. 1 would like to thank Maj. Gen. Ben-Eliahu, Israel Air Force Commander, Prof. Cohen, Rector of Tel-Aviv University, Dr. Shoshani, Chairman of the Board of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel, and all the persons who spent their precious time on the subject of "Birds and Flight Safety" highly related to the Air Traffic.

The seminar will be an important study to improve flight safety and reduce the risk of bird hazards to military aviation. The importance of this seminar will increase more and more as the subject is a common problem of our countries, and in addition, the bonds existing between our nations will be strengthened as a result of the shared work and research, and its effects will be followed together with the peace process in the Middle East. I am sure and believe that the results of the seminar will be successful and will open the gate for new seminars in the near future.

Desiring the rise in the number of organizations of this type of seminar and study, I would like to thank you for your kind invitation, and take the opportunity to extend my most sincere wishes to all the participants.

General Ilhan Kilic
Commander, Turkish Air Force



Dear Seminar Participants,

Collisions between aircraft and birds are often ignored, sometimes anticipated, and then either accepted or avoided. It is impossible to fly without any risk, but once a risk is understood we start to weigh operational urgency against safety. Knowledge about the presence and behavior of birds will promote bird avoidance as part of bird strike prevention measures. The Israeli concept of aircraft and birds sharing the air is now appreciated worldwide. Further development of this approach, and extension over the whole Middle East, would not only improve flying safety, an obvious matter of short term self-interest. Through its educational and symbolic value, it also contributes to our ultimate safety, a sustainable and peaceful world.

Sincerely, Drs. Luit Buurma
Chairman of the International Bird Strike Committee (IBSC)


Honored Seminar Delegates,

The Faculty of Life Sciences at Tel Aviv University has been leading biological research in the field in Israel for more then four decades. Many of these studies played a leading role in nature conservation in Israel. Scientists from Tel Aviv University were among the pioneers and founders of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI), in the beginning of the 1 950's, and the Nature and National Parks Protection Authority a decade later. Therefore, it is a great honor to host together with the Israel Air Force and the SPNI, the International Seminar on Flight Safety and Birds in the Middle East. The International Center for the Study of Bird Migration at Latrun initiated and led the seminar's organization. Through Tel Aviv University, we are promoting the center's scientific activities, which have had an active role in reducing the number of / pilots injured by birds as well as resulted in significant savings to the national defense budget. We feel that the seminar will also play an important role in promoting the peace process in the region. I believe that in the next few years the air forces in the Middle East will cooperate with one another and provide an excellent example of applied research to the rest of the world.

Wishing you all an enjoyable seminar,
Prof. Nili Cohen
Rector of Tel Aviv University


Dear Colleagues,

The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI) is the largest non-governmental organization (NGO) in Israel which for 46 years has lead struggles to protect our unique natural environment, flora and fauna. Bird migration is one of the subjects that has captivated human imagination since the beginning of time. In 1984, a joint research project was initiated by the SPNI together with the Israel Air Force and Tel Aviv University. The project's results significantly reduced collisions with birds in the Israel Air Force. This was a unique model where cooperation between civil and military organizations delivered results we are all proud of. This seminar is another important step in promoting regional cooperation. I am confident that the model developed in Israel will be also be developed by our colleagues in Jordan, by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature in cooperation with the Royal Jordanian Air Force as well as in Turkey by the DHKD in cooperation with the Turkish Air Force.

The SPNI will continue its efforts to promote nature conservation on a regional level, rather than as localized projects, providing a bridge for cooperation between people to help sustain a better environment and brighter future. Welcome to Israel and enjoy the seminar,

Dr. Shimson Shoshani
Chairman of the Board of the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel


Ladies, Gentlemen, Respected Guests,

The men and women of Lockheed Martin are proud to be a sponsor of this important and unique seminar. It is important because it involves improving the safety of flying operations through the work of international scholars and experts, studying and cooperating on the shared use of the airspace - shared between man and his flying machines and the birds. It is unique because of the imaginative technical approaches to the challenge combined with the essential cooperation among the regional air forces. Forces, and our universal concern for protecting the environment. Lockheed Martin is privileged to be playing a role in the success of this mission.

General (Ret.) James Jamerson
Vice President, International Programs, Lockheed Martin



Until the beginning of the century, birds (together with insects and bats) ruled the skies for millions of years. Only about 96 years ago at the beginning of aviation, human beings succeeded in taking a dramatic step by sharing the third dimension with the birds. Anyone who has had the pleasure of flying an aircraft will never forget the uplifting feeling of the wheels leaving the runway and overcoming the forces of gravity, a feeling hard to put into words. Those people fortunate enough to sit in any type of glider and ride a thermal together with thousands of migrating storks, pelicans or eagles, being pulled up, wing tip to wing tip with the birds, while the only sound is the wings of the glider or the birds Cutting the air cannot avoid feeling exhilarated by what most people only dream of, flying like birds.

Towards the end of the second millennium, the conflict between birds, military and civilian aviation has increased dramatically for several reasons:

(1) The globe has become much smaller with the help of aircraft that have become an integral part of our lives The rate of takeoffs and landings has increased significantly, concomitantly raising the risk of air collision with birds (2) Military and civilian aircraft fly much faster and therefore the impact and damage to aircraft has increased significantly (3) Two decades ago a jet fighter cost only a few million dollars today the cost has increased two-fold or more and with it the potential loss from a collision. Today such an accident can result in damage costing hundreds of millions of dollars not including the loss of lives (4) Air forces around the world have stopped training in their airspace only and now train in wide regions spanning several continents.

During the last two decades there has been an increase in the knowledge being collected to solve the conflict between birds and flight safety. The International Bird Strike Committee (IBSC) is an organization that meets every two years, with representatives from dozens of military and civilian organizations around the world devoted to solving the conflict. The Israeli Air Force has dealt with the problem seriously since 1983 when the Sinai Peninsula was returned to Egypt.

Through joint research projects between the Israeli Air Force The Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel and Tel Aviv University a great deal of knowledge has been obtained on bird migration and used to significantly decrease damage to military aircraft, particularly from migrating birds. With the advancement of the peace process in the region and the improved cooperation between the Royal Jordanian, Turkish, Israeli and United States Air Forces it seems only normal that the project Migrating Birds Know No Boundaries should be used as one of the first concepts to develop regional cooperation aimed at solving the bird and flight safety conflict. The same migrating birds cross the borders of several countries in the region within one to two days. Within the framework of the seminar, we plan to share the vast experience that has been acquired around the world with representatives of the regional air forces and discuss plans for cooperation in the Middle east, which was once a battlefield. The Middle East can hopefully become a model for cooperation between regional air forces and other areas around the world.

Seminar objectives:

1. To present recent research and programs used in the field of birds and flight safety around the world.

2. To promote regional cooperation under the slogan "Birds Know No Boundaries", which will help promote the peace process in the region.

3. To prepare an operative work proposal to promote the issue.

I would like to take the opportunity to personally thank all those people that have helped made this seminar a success: The Israel Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Eitan Ben-Eliahu, Deputy Commander of the Israel Air Force, Brig. Gen. Avner Nave, Head of Command of Control Units Headquarters, Col. Benny Cohen, Head of Command of Air Force Safety and Inspection Directorate, Col. Tamir Safra, and Lt. Col. Ra'anan Cohen. To the staff of Tel Aviv University and the Society for the Protection of Nature, Judy Shamoun-Baranes, Yael Mandelik and Hadas Zitolovsky for their long hours of work to promote the seminar and to Einav Paz and Shira of Arnon Paz Cooperation. To Prof. Boaz Moav, Head of the Zoology Department and Prof. Yoram Yom-Tov.

I would like to extend special gratitude to all the public and private organizations for their contribution to the success of this seminar, seeing it as an important step in improving flight safety and especially the peace process in the region:

To Lockheed Martin and especially Brig. Gen. (ret.) Joshua Shani who made a central contribution to making the seminar a success, to General Electric Vice President Lorraine Bolsinger, the European Office of Aerospace Research and Development, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, United States Air Force Research Laboratory - especially to Lt. Col. Mark Smith, to the President of the Stork Foundation, Mrs. Hiltrud Oberwelland, to the General Director of El Al, Brig. Gen. (ret.) Yoel Feldshau. To the Israel Space Agency, the Ministry of Science and its director Aby Har-Even, to the Israel Airports Authority and especially to its General Director Avi Koskelitz, Uri Orlev and Yair Ganot. To Moshe Yanai, Vice President of Engineering, EMC2, who has contributed to the International Center for the Study of Bird Migration at Latrun since it was established. To the Samis Foundation and especially to Mr. Barry Ernstaff and last but not least to the staff of the Armored Memorial Association and especially to Maj. Gen. (ret.) Musa Peled, Chairman of the Board, and Brig. Gen. (ret.) Menashe Inbar, General Director, To Miriam Feinberg-Varmus for the professional English Editingo to Meir & Asaf Billet for the professional work and dedication.

We would like to wish everyone a successful and fruitful seminar, with the hope that together we can promote flight safety in the Middle East for the people and the birds.

Dr. Yossi Leshem
Yael Mandelik
Judy Shamoun-Baranes


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