News from Iraq; Darwin Conservation Project

Over the last week, Nature Iraq staff visited five schools in the area surrounding Peramagroon mountain, near Sulaimani, to construct nestboxes with primary, secondary, and high school students. One hundred and eight students built forty three nestboxes, designed to provide homes for Great Tits, a common species in the area. School teachers and directors were involved and engaged with the project, and all gave positive feedback. In the coming weeks, NI staff will return to the schools to help mount the boxes and follow up with the communities.

Recovering Turkey’s First Tracked Egyptian Vulture Neophron percnopterus in Iraq

Under the umbrella of protection carried out by Nature Iraq, we conducted an expedition to find a Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus) which was fitted with a satellite transmitter by KuzeyDoga (, an environmental organization in eastern Turkey. Egyptian vultures have been classified as globally Endangered (EN) according to the IUCN Red List (2012), this is the first time Egyptian vultures in Turkey are being tracked.

Controversial Ilisu Dam on Hasankeyf halted by Turkish court

9 January 2012, Istanbul - The Turkish State Council ruled on January 7 in favour of the legal case filed by the Chamber of Architects and Engineers (TMMOB) against the construction of the Ilisu dam project, ordering an immediate halt to the controversial dam construction in southeast Turkey.

The Council of State concluded that the Ilisu dam construction on the Tigris River, proceeding without the legally required Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), goes against Turkish Environment law and EIA regulations.