home Animal Health Strategy and Policy Socio-economics Farming systems Information resources


As H5N1 highly pathogenic avian influenza virus emerged, it became clear that partnerships amongst organizations and individuals with expertise in biology, veterinary medicine, wildlife disease, ecology, disease diagnosis, epidemiology, public health, among others, were going to be necessary to properly address the large number of “unknowns” related to this emerging diseases. Furthermore, proper surveillance activities, disease ecology studies, and response to outbreaks require an integrated team of people with expertise many disciplines. Since the Emergency Centre for Transboundary Animal Diseases (ECTAD), Wildlife Disease Programme, consists of 2 staff working from the UN-FAO headquarters in Rome and 1 staff person based at the Regional ECTAD Office for Asia and the Pacific in Bangkok , success of the programme is to be determined by the nature and effectiveness of partnerships. To date, the Wildlife Disease Programme works closely with more than 100 individuals or organizations in an effort to understand HPAI. The short list is provided below.

 CMS - Convention on Migratory Species of Wild Animals

The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (also known as CMS or the Bonn Convention) aims to conserve terrestrial, marine and avian migratory species throughout their range. It is an intergovernmental treaty, concluded under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and concerned with the conservation of wildlife and habitats on a global scale. Since the Convention's entry into force, its membership has grown steadily to include 98 (as of 1 August 2006) Parties from Africa, Central and South America, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

CMS together with AEWA and UNEP were the driving force for establishing the Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds and the creators of this online Avian Influenza information resource. CMS with its partners organised the Seminar on Avian Influenza in Nairobi, Kenya.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.cms.int
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.cms.int/avianflu/index.htm

 AEWA - African Eurasian Waterbird Agreement

AEWA is an independent intergovernmental treaty concluded under the aegis of CMS and specialised in the conservation of migratory waterbirds. The Agreement covers 235 species of birds ecologically dependent on wetlands for at least part of their annual cycle, covering a large geographic area across Europe, parts of Asia and Canada, the Middle East and Africa. So far its membership has grown to 57 Parties (as of 1 October 2006). The Agreement provides for coordinated and concerted actions to be taken by the Range States throughout the migration systems of the waterbirds to which it applies.

AEWA supported CMS and UNEP in establishing the Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and was one of the main organizers of the Scientific Seminar on Avian Influenza in Nairobi, Kenya. AEWA is an active member of the Scientific Task Force.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.unep-aewa.org

 BirdLife International

Bird Life InternationalBirdLife International is a global Partnership of conservation organisations that strives to conserve birds, their habitats and global biodiversity, working with people towards sustainability in the use of natural resources. BirdLife Partners operate in over one hundred countries and territories worldwide and collaborate on regional work programmes in every continent. With its expert knowledge of migratory birds, their habitats and migratory routes, BirdLife was amongst the first organizations to inform the world community on the spread and impacts of AI, and to stress the role of the international poultry and wild birds trades in this spread. BirdLife is particularly concerned that H5N1 may pose a significant threat to the conservation of congregatory waterfowl. BirdLife believes that greater collaboration between ornithologists, ecologists, veterinarians, virologists, industry and others is needed to tackle the threat of AI effectively.

In terms of Avian Influenza, BirdLife believes that greater collaboration between veterinarians, experts, industries and other bodies is needed to tackle the threat of avian flu effectively and therefore participates actively in the AI task force.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.birdlife.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage:

 CBD (Convention on Biological Diversity)

Convention on Biological DiversityThe CBD was adopted at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. This pact among the vast majority of the world's governments sets out commitments for maintaining the world's ecological underpinnings as part of sustainable development. The Convention establishes three main goals: the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of genetic resources. The first ever scientific assessment of AI, wildlife and biodiversity was carried out in conjunction with the eighth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CBD, held in Curitiba, Brazil, in March 2006. Among the outcomes of this meeting were a number of suggestions and recommendations including increased surveillance and monitoring of wild birds and mammals in affected countries with a special focus on Asia where H5N1 has become endemic.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.biodiv.org

Chinese Academy of Sciences (Computer Network Information Center, Institute of
Zoology, Microbiology, Virology, and NW Institute of Qinghai Plateau Biology)

Chinese Academy of SciencesThe Computer Network Information Center, Chinese Academy of Sciences (CNIC, CAS) is a subsidiary research institute of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). CNIC is a support institution for sustainable construction, operation and service for informatization of Chinese Academy of Sciences, an operation management institution for basic resources of China's Internet, R&D base for advanced network and high-end application technology, and important component of the advanced S&T networks both at home and abroad.Founded in April, 1995, CNIC is a research support institution evolved in the course of building up China Science and Technology Network (CSTNet) and Scientific Database.

For more information
Official Website: http://english.cnic.cn/

CIC (International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation)

International Council for Game and Wildlife ConservationThe International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation is a politically independent advisory body internationally active on a non-profit basis. With its renowned scientific capacity, the CIC assists governments and environmental organizations in maintaining natural resources by sustainable use. One of the CIC bodies is the Migratory Birds Commission, which participates (also on behalf of FACE) in the TF with the immediate target to encourage appropriate research and monitoring, to gather quality information on the role of wild birds in Avian Influenza epidemiology and to avoid the unjustifiable blaming of wild birds. CIC aims to prevent unjustified measures restricting or banning the sustainable use of birds and their habitats.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.cic-wildlife.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.cic-wildlife.org/index.php?id=170


CIRADCIRAD is a French agricultural research centre working for international development. Most of its research is conducted in partnership. CIRAD has chosen sustainable development as the cornerstone of its operations worldwide. This means taking account of the long-term ecological, economic and social consequences of change in developing communities and countries. CIRAD contributes to development through research and trials, training, dissemination of information, innovation and appraisals. Its expertise spans the life sciences, human sciences and engineering sciences and their application to agriculture and food, natural resource management and society.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.cirad.fr/

 FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations)

Food and Agriculture Organization of the United NationsFAO leads international efforts to defeat hunger. Serving both developed and developing countries, FAO acts as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate agreements and debate policy. Since its founding in 1945, FAO helps developing countries and countries in transition, modernise and improve agriculture, forestry and fisheries practices and ensure good nutrition for all. FAO and OIE, in collaboration with WHO, have taken the initiative to start a stepwise and consultative process of developing the so-called ‘Global strategy for the Progressive Control of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI)'. The document provides a long term vision, goal, approach and implementation plans to control HPAI.

Organized by FAO and OIE the International Scientific Conference on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds took place in Rome (30-31 May 2006). It was a follow-up conference to the Scientific Seminar on Avian Influenza in Nairobi. Scientific information on AI and the role of wild birds was exchanged as well as how to assess the risk of the introduction of HPAI virus to yet uninfected areas and appropriate mitigation and preventive measures.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.fao.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: www.fao.org/avianflu/en/index.html

 Mongolian Academy of Sciences

Mongolian Academy of SciencesKnowledge has always been of high regard and great value for Mongolians. It was in the 13th century, when Mongolians, in particular the Great Khaan Khubilai, established the first academic organization of the nation, "The Academy of Worthies". Mongolia’s first center of modern sciences came into being in 1921 when the Government of newly independent Mongolia issued a resolution declaring the establishment of "Institute of Literature and Scripts", which was later upgraded into “Institute of Sciences” and then “Institute of Sciences and Higher Education”. In 1961, it was finally reorganized as "the Mongolian Academy of Sciences" (MAS).At present, under its direct supervision the MAS operates 16 research Institutes and Centers, the Ulaanbaatar University. Furthermore in joint operation it supervises 9 research and production corporations.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.mas.ac.mn/en/

 OIE (World Organization for Animal Health)

World Organization for Animal HealthThe OIE is an international and intergovernmental organization founded in 1924. The OIE concentrates inter alias on: collection, analysis and distribution of the latest scientific information on animal disease control; international cooperation in combating animal disease and the warranting of world trade by developing specific measures on the management of sanitary and phytosanitary problems to the risks posed by trade in animals and animal products. This applies also to Avian Influenza where OIE through its experts and its world network of Reference Laboratories and Collaborating Centres remain at the disposal of all Member countries requesting assistance in the definition of policies and diagnosis, control and eradication of disease in animals. As a result of the engagement by OIE as well as FAO and WHO a Global Strategy to prevent the further spread of H5N1 was developed. OIE and FAO were the organisers of the International Scientific Conference on Avian Influenza (see above) in Rome May 2006.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.oie.int
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.oie.int/eng/info/en_influenza.htm

 Ramsar (Ramsar Convention on Wetlands)

Ramsar Convention on WetlandsThe Convention on Wetlands, concluded in Ramsar, Iran, in 1971, is an intergovernmental treaty, which provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. There are currently 152 Contracting Parties to the Convention, with 1609 wetland sites, totaling 145.8 million hectares, designated for inclusion in the Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance. During the 9th Conference of the Parties in Kampala, Uganda, November 2005, Resolution IX.23 (link) “Highly pathogenic avian influenza and its consequences for wetland and waterbird conservation and wise use” was developed and adopted focusing on issues and risks to the commitments of Parties to the conservation and wise use of wetlands, and notably those concerning migratory waterbirds.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.ramsar.org

 UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme)

United Nations Environment Programme UNEP is the main environmental program of the United Nation and was founded in 1972; it promotes the wise use and sustainable development of the global environment. To accomplish these goals UNEP works together with a wide range of national and international partners (governments, NGO's, the private sector etc.) UNEP together with CMS has helped in developing early warning systems. The system is aimed at giving, especially for developing countries, improved information including maps on the migration routes of wild waterbirds. Furthermore UNEP in close cooperation with CMS and AEWA hosted the Scientific Seminar on Avian Influenza in Nairobi and financially supports several other workshops and seminars establishing a strong information platform on the disease.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.unep.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.unep.org/Documents.Multilingual/

 UN/ISDR-PPEW (Platform for the Promotion of Early Warning)

Platform for the Promotion of Early Warning The Platform for the Promotion of Early Warning, which started operations in 2004, will help the development of early warning and preparedness systems by advocating for better early warning systems, especially in development assistance policy and programs, collecting and disseminating information on best practices, and stimulating cooperation among early warning actors and the development of new ways to improve early warning systems. PPEW support international action necessary to more systematically integration of technical early warning capacities into policy and practice, and improve early warning systems worldwide in order to facilitate the development of effective, people centred early warning and preparedness systems. The Platform is advocating for better early warning systems, especially in development assistance policy and programs, collecting and disseminating information on best practices, and stimulating cooperation among early warning actors and the development of new ways to advance early warning systems. PPEW strongly supports the concept of people centred early warning systems which comprises four key elements of (i) risk knowledge, (ii) monitoring and warning service, (iii) dissemination and communication, and (iv) response capability.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.unisdr.org/ppew/

 University of New Hampshire (Complex Systems Research Center)

Complex Systems Research CenteComplex Systems Research Center is dedicated to understanding the Earth as an integrative system. Our mission is to explore the physical, chemical and biological processes that shape the Earth's environment, with emphasis on the unique role of humans as an agent of change. Through a combination of field studies, space-based observations, data integration, and modeling, the Center pursues interdisciplinary studies of global environmental change from both scientific and policy perspectives. We strive to serve the public interest by providing a scientific basis for informed decision-making at local, state, national and global levels. The Center also serves as a platform for educating the next generation of Earth System scientists and environmental managers. The Center is built on strong collaborations that are national and international in scope.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.csrc.sr.unh.edu/


U.S. Geological Survey As an unbiased, multi-disciplinary science organization that focuses on biology, geography, geology, geospatial information, and water, we are dedicated to the timely, relevant, and impartial study of the landscape, our natural resources, and the natural hazards that threaten us. Please visit us at the following links to know more about each center.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.usgs.gov/

 Wetlands International

Wetlands International WI is the only global NGO dedicated to the conservation and wise use of wetlands. It works globally (currently through 16 country offices around the world), regionally and nationally to achieve the conservation and wise use of wetlands, to benefit diversity and human well-beings. WI is an independent, not-for-profit organization, supported by Government membership from all continents, extensive specialist networks and volunteers. Regarding AI, Wetlands International is keen to provide access to its expertise on waterbirds and wetlands, its databases and flyway atlases to provide information on the relationship, if any, between wild populations of waterbirds and the reported patterns of disease within the farmed bird stock and to develop appropriate responses. WI has been a driving force in establishing the Avian Influenza Task Force. It has actively promoted and supported development of resolutions passed at various conventions on the development of an appropriate analysis about the role of wild birds in the spread of this disease and to raise global attention and action. WI works with the members of this Task Force and others to promote development of an early warning system through improved surveillance in wild birds and migration studies.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.wetlands.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage:

 WCS (Wildlife Conservation Society)

Wildlife Conservation SocietyThe Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild lands through careful science, international conservation efforts in over fifty countries of the world, education, and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks. WCS's Field Veterinary Program has been studying and monitoring the health of wild birds populations for nearly two decades and along with partner organizations has established the Global Avian Influenza Network for Surveillance for wild birds (GAINS). This Network was devised to detect the virus in wild migratory and resident bird populations, identify new strains of the virus that could be used to update vaccines and to better understand influenza viruses in wild birds, and create an open database for real-time information sharing on this and other pathogens. As the leader of the initiative, WCS works in tandem with USAID, the CDC, Wetlands International, BirdLife International, the Percy FitzPatrick Ornithological Institute, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization, and others to ensure better protection against the looming pandemic.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.wcs.org
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.wcs.org/353624/tooltofightavianflu

 WHO (World Health Organization)

World Health OrganizationThe World Health Organisation is the United Nations specialized agency for health. WHO's objective, as set out in its Constitution, is the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health. WHO is governed by 192 Member States through the World Health Assembly. The main tasks of the World Health Assembly are to approve the WHO program and the budget for the following biennium and to decide major policy questions. Regarding AI, the WHO is coordinating the global response to human cases of H5N1 and monitoring the corresponding threat of an influenza pandemic. The WHO provides regularly updated information on its website tracking the evolving situation and provides access to both technical guidelines and information useful for the general public. It has also prepared a global influenza preparedness plan. It updates and significantly revises the Influenza pandemic plan. This new plan addresses the possibility of a prolonged existence of an influenza virus of pandemic potential, such as the H5N1. The role of WHO and guidelines for national and regional planning was published by WHO in 1999.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.who.int
Designated Avian Influenza Webpage: http://www.who.int/csr/disease/avian_influenza/en/

 Zoological Society of London

Zoological Society of LondonThe Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is a charity devoted to conservation and education. Its scientists in the laboratory and the field, animal management teams at zoos and its veterinarians contribute wide-ranging skills and experience to both practical conservation and to the scientific research that underpins this work. The charity is made up of five operating divisions:Institute of Zoology, Conservation Programmes, Fellowship Services, London Zoo, Whipsnade Wild Animal Park. The Society has expertise in disease epidemiology both in the Institute of Zoology and in Conservation programmes. Dr Richard Kock has worked with epizootic diseases in Africa for the past 15 years including contributions to the Pan African strategy on Avian Influenza during his secondment to the African Union InterAfrican Bureau for Animal Diseases.He is now stationed in London, has the brief to monitor the AI situation for the Society and represents ZSL on the DEFRA meetings on the subject.

For more information
Official Website: http://www.zsl.org

Other NGO partners

Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust
Max Planck Institute for Migration (Germany)
Asia Ecological Consultants, Ltd.
Worldwide Fund for Nature Hong Kong
A.P. Leventis Ornithological Research Institute

Governmental Aid and Research Organizations

Western Ecological Research Center (USGS)
Patuxent Wildlife Research Center (USGS)
Alaska Science Center (USGS)
United States Agency for international Development (USAID)
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA)
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Spanish International Cooperation Agency (AECI)
U.S. Naval Medical Research Unit #3 (Cairo) (NAMRU3)


Contact us  |  Site Map  |  © FAO,