Turkey is home to 103 types of waterfowls
Turkey was home to 1.72 million water birds of 103 species over the winter, the Mid-Winter Water Bird Count 2018 report has revealed.
The 34th count, coordinated by the Forestry and Water Affairs Ministry, was jointly conducted by the ministry, universities, NGOs, and volunteers between Jan. 15 and Feb. 15 in 153 wetland areas.
The Eurasian coot (Fulica atra) was determined as the most populous aquatic bird species with 847,093 birds. They were detected in 109 wetlands across Turkey.
The number of black-headed gulls, which is a symbol of Istanbul and the Bosphorus, is estimated at over 95,000.
The common pochard (a medium-sized diving duck), the Eurasian teal (a species of dabbling ducks), the greater flamingo, the mallard (another species of dabbling ducks with green heads), and yellow-legged gull are aquatic bird species with populations of over 50,000 in Turkey, according to the report.
The number of great black cormorants, which are found in 97 wetlands with Lake Eğirdir coming in first with the highest number of birds, is estimated at nearly 48,000.
Bird species that were the lowest in number were the Egyptian goose, pomarine jaeger, gull-billed tern, and Syrian woodpecker, with only one of each bird species seen.
The count of birds could not be taken around Lake Tuz (salt), because of its large surface and shallowness. The lake is considered one of the largest hypersaline lakes in the world.
It also could not be carried out in the Acarlar Floodplain Forest in the northwestern province of Sakarya because many of its areas are inaccessible, with countless hideouts for birds.
According to the Land Hunting Law, there are 485 bird species and 150 mammal species living in Turkey.