Monitoring of Birds of Poland (MBP) is a project (consisting of 25 programmes) implemented in Poland in 2006, to fill requirements of the EU Bird Directive: the effective protection and monitor favourable conservation status of endangered species. The project is commissioned by the Chief Inspectorate of Environmental Protection (GIOŚ) and supported by the National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Managements (NFOŚiGW). A few top institutions involved in nature protection and studies in Poland lead the project: the coordinating role is Polish Society for the Protection of Birds, along with the Museum and Institute of Zoology PAS, Eagle Protection Committee, Owl Conservation Association and PTOP Salamandra.
Monitoring of Birds of Poland (MBP) is an extensive project, which includes 25 separate monitoring programmes designed to collect data on single species or groups of species, during both breeding, migration and wintering periods. In total, MBP covers about 190 species, among which 164 are monitored during breeding season (70% of breeding avifauna), 30 in winter and 4 during migrations. The state of avian populations is characterized by two basic parameters: abundance (absolute or relative numbers, i.e., indices) and occupancy (range size). For selected species, reproduction indices are collected as well. MBP covers nearly 20% of the Polish territory in recent years, and over 800 highly skilled observers, both professionals and amateurs, take part in fieldwork.
Breeding bird populations are either censused (the whole national populations monitored) or sampled (surveys of populations within a sample of plots). Sampling plots are squares of 1 km2, 2 km2or 100 km2 size (depending on a programme), within which birds are counted along the transects (distance sampling approach), on observation points (with or without voice stimulation), within suitable habitats or in breeding colonies. Multispecies surveys are conducted with highly standardized methods, allowing effective detection and high reliability of results. Single-species projects are designed to consider the species-specific biology in each case. The results obtained on population sizes are either actual numbers (absolute population sizes) or indices (relative population sizes), while range size is characterized by an occupancy measure. Information on national trends on population size and range can be then derived.
Migrating birds are counted in the majority of important resting places (roosts, feeding areas of geese and crane) over a country, while censuses of wintering waterbirds include most important inland reservoirs and rivers and several transects at sea, distributed across most of Polish territorial waters (birds are counted from a ship in the latter case).
Results can be viewed in the database, where the particular projects, species of interest, strata and years can be selected.