The core of our project consists of the annual migration survey (since 2008). The high proportions of European and Central-Asian raptors migrating through the region make South-West Georgia an ideal site for the assessment of large-scale population trends. Our monitoring is supported by a large international volunteer team (about 50 people each autumn). As such, the BRC forms an excellent meeting point for people who share an interest in raptor ecology and bird migration.
The idea for the Batumi Raptor Count dates back to 2004, when Brecht Verhelst, Stijn Hantson and Nicolas Vanermen traveled through the Caucasus, and spent a week in Batumi, to observe the spectacular raptor migration. Irakli Goradze helped them to find a good watchpoint, and provided them with the results of earlier counts.
Batumi Raptor Count, or BRC, is a nature conservation NGO that works to monitor and protect the 850,000+ birds of prey that migrate every autumn through the Batumi Bottleneck at the Black Sea City of Batumi, in the Republic of Georgia.