Ethiopia is located on the West Asia - East Africa flyway of birds migrating from central Asia to tropical East Africa. It hosts a great diversity of breeding birds and offers several major wintering sites for migratory Palaearctic water birds, which congregate in large numbers and mix with resident birds, from August-September to March-April. The Rift Valley lakes in the Eastern Africa Region hold some of the most significant wetlands of Africa: 50% of the total Ethiopian population of resident and migratory wetland birds frequents the Rift Valley lakes. The main sites are the lakes Abijatta and Chitu.
Epidemiological surveys of the influenza virus in wild birds have been conducted in the Rift Valley lakes in January 2006 (ducks), and in January 2007 (shorebirds and ducks), in the framework of the Technical Cooperation Programmes (TCP) of FAO.
Research project GRIPAVI
funded by the French Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs : longitudinal study site looking at wild birds, intensive poultry and backyard poultry systems; starting during the last part of 2007 and for at least 3 years.