Crane Day: A School Ecological Event

Crane Day:  A School Ecological Event

Crane Day – an ecological event devoted to one of the world’s most graceful birds – a symbol of conservation organizations – has been organized at School No. 30 in Dovletli etrap, Lebap velayat. The day was purposely chosen to be marked in winter, as one of crane species – gray cranes – are now wintering in the Amudarya Valley and surrounding areas in the south of the region. 

Field trips were organized before the event to count the birds in Dovletli etrap (Tallymerjen Oasis), Kerki etrap (the agricultural areas of Vatan and Dashkak), the 15 Years of Independence of Turkmenistan Reservoir area, and in the Amudarya Nature Reserve’s Kelif Bird Sanctuary.  

The school event was virtually attended by Chairman of the Coordination Committee of the Ramsar Regional Initiative for Central Asia Professor E. A. Rustamov and Head of the Scientific Department of the Koytendag State Nature Reserve Shaniyaz Mengliev. Students from School No. 27, Dovletli etrap gave a presentation on biology and crane conservation. 

The event saw winners of a children’s art competition entitled “Cranes through the Eyes of Children” announced (more than 50 schoolchildren had participated in it). The winners, who received certificates of merits and copies of “Birds of Turkmenistan: A Field Guide” (2013), had been selected in several categories: for the best depiction of morphological and ecological traits of cranes; for the best reflection of distinctive national flavors and depiction of environmental problems; for the best design, originality and technical excellence. 

Among the competition winners are students from Schools Nos. 27, 29 and 30: Myakhri Shokhradova, Marjona Ulashbaeva, Ogulgerek Khemraeva, Oguljan Niyzmuradova, Novruza Kurbanova, and Kadyr Egenmuradov. 

The school event also featured performances by amateur dance groups and songs about cranes performed by a school choir in the Turkmen and Russian languages, and the screening of a Turkmenfilm short-length movie called “Durnaly: A Heaven for Cranes” (directed by Murat Annageldyev). 

After the event came to an end, its participants were gladly posing for photographs and making plans for next year’s Crane Day. 

Aziza BESHIMOVA, a WWF expert