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Memo 4 - October 14, 2011

2nd Asian Bird Fair - Tainan
October 14, 2011
Cambridge Hotel, Tainan City, Taiwan

WBCP (Wild Bird Club of the Philippines) - Mike Lu, Anna Gonzales, Mark Villa
CWBF (Chinese Wild Bird Federation) - Victor Yu, Charles Cheng, Brad Huang.
WBST (Wild Bird Society of Taipei) – James Juan, David Ho
MNS (Malaysia Nature Society) – Rafi Kudus
BCST (Bird Conservation Society of Thailand) – Amorn Liukeeratiyutkul, Maliwan Sopha
NSS (Nature Society of Singapore) - Willie Foo

ABF founders (L-R) Victor Yu, MIke Lu, Amorn Liukeeratiyutkul,
Charles Cheng, Willie Foo, Rafi Kudus

1. Brief report by CWBP on preparation of the 2nd ABF Charles and Victor explained how CWBF prepared for the 2nd ABF. Victor mentioned that for funding they were able to get support from the central government, from the Forest Bureau of the Ministry of Agriculture and also from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They also worked closely with the Tainan city government who did a very good job for the event.

They also recounted the story about the new mayor of Tainan who at first did not have much ecological concept or knowledge. It was a good thing that they had the backing of the legislator who was able to influence the mayor to accept the idea of the ABF and support the event.

They also invited young students from an indigenous group to perform during the opening night ceremony. Charles mentioned that the good thing is that they were able to learn more about of capabilities of CWBP which implies that they can do more in the future.

He also highlighted that Victor laid the groundwork and despite the fact that he was no longer connected with CWBF, continued to play a vital role. Victor’s role was very ably taken over by Brad Huang. Charles mentioned that despite the rainy weather earlier during the Welcome Dinner he is positive that the 2-day event will be successful.

It was mentioned that it is a good idea to highlight ABF as a major event and that it is there to promote the whole region of Asia.

2. Short report by BCST on 3rd ABF Amorn gave a brief discussion.

It was mentioned that they have contacted Tourism Bureau for support for both Thailand Bird Fair in 2011 and 2012 but are still looking for other funders.

They mentioned that they already have a venue for both 2011 and 2012 bird fair, which is BANGPOO Recreational Center in Samutprakarn Province, just 2 hours away from Bangkok.

They mentioned that they have invited the supporters for the 2011 Thailand bird fair so they will have an idea on what to expect for the 2012 Asian Bird Fair.

They have invited and prepared for 80 booths with at least 50 booths for local organizations.

They mentioned that conservation is not just for birds but is an integrated job, which will involve many parties like birders, national parks, etc.

They also mentioned that support is to be had mostly from private companies, as very little support can be had from the government. There was a discussion for the need to look for support from international funders. It was also mentioned that next year will be the international year of eco-tourism which hopefully will help with solicitation of funds.

3. Discussion of scheduling for 2012 and 2013 Asian Bird Fairs, with the question of the short interval between November 2012 ABF in Thailand and March 2013 ABF in Malaysia.

There was a suggestion to have WBST to hold 2013 ABF instead. Raffy Kudus, the MNS representative will discuss this with Andrew. But this does not solve the problem because MSN cannot change March schedule of bird festival as their festival features raptor migration in Tanjung Tuan, which happens in March.

Both WBST and BCST hold their bird fairs on November. BCST cannot hold their bird fair too earlier (i.e. October) because of the rainy season.

The solution has been the following shift of schedules to accommodate each other’s schedules.

- WBST (Wild Bird Society of Taipei) will hold their bird fair in early October 2012 (i.e. first week of October)
- BCST will hold the 3rd Asian Bird Fair on November 10-11, 2012
- WBCP (Wild Bird Club of the Philippines) will hold Bird fest in early or mid-December 2012
- MNS (Malaysian Nature Society) will hold their bird fair in late March 2013

This shift of schedule is to encourage other ABF members to be able to attend each other's bird fairs.

4. How to expand and invite other countries/organizations within the region to join the ABF.

The question was brought up if rules should be drawn up first before inviting the other organizations. There is a problem that ABF is currently a loose organization with no officially held positions yet. Other bird clubs that may be included/invited are the following: Hong Kong. Xiamen, Shanghai, Beijing, Borneo, Korea, Burma, India, Indonesia, Japan.

Another meeting will be held on October 16 to include representatives of other organizations present at the 2nd ABF.

During the said meeting, the formation and aims of the ABF will introduced to these organizations and to ask for their opinions and suggestions.

The other organizations will be invited to the ABF Google Forum. It was concluded that the more countries to join and the more united the members of the ABF are, the easier it will be to get sponsorships. It was also mentioned that members of each organization, not just the staff, should know about the annual ABF and should be encouraged to join and visit each others' festivals, to promote and support each other’s activities, to create personal links and eventually do more birding.

5. Other Matters

It was mentioned that the bird fair has many participants that speak different languages and that there is the need for proper translation so that everyone will be able to understand the program(s) ie Mandarin and English in Tainan and Thai and English in Bangpu next year.

WBST president gave a quick talk to discuss ABF in Taipei in 2014. He mentioned that his first term will be due in 2013 but hopefully he will still be able to run for another term and serve until 2015. He mentioned that there would be a close team that will work together that will treat ABF as an important event and will do a good job. He also mentioned that WBST has 3 years in preparation for the 2014 ABF in Taipei.

Willie Foo of Singapore also gave a quick talk for 2015 ABF in Singapore.

He said that they have started discussion with Economic Development Board but was told that 2015 may still be too early for Singapore to prepare for ABF. He said that they would probably need 2 to 3 more years. He also mentioned that they will try to coincide the ABF in Singapore with F1 racing (i.e. 1 week before F1 racing. A question was asked whether Singapore bird race can be coincided with the ABF but the answer was that the two will probably have to be separate.