The lapwing is the “Bird of the Year” 2024. In a public vote on the Internet, it came first with 27.8 percent of the votes, as announced by the German Nature Conservation Association (Nabu) and the Bavarian Nature Conservation Association LBV. The Little Owl came in second, followed by the Partridge, Barn Swallow and Honey Buzzard. Around 120,000 people took part in the vote this time.

“Any of these bird species would have been worthy of the title, but the lapwing particularly deserves it,” said LBV chairman Norbert Schäffer in Hilpoltstein. The lapwing is now considered critically endangered because its population has plummeted in recent decades.

Too little habitat for the lapwing

The two nature conservation associations have been choosing the bird of the year since 1971 to draw attention to the threats to bird life. Since 2021, the population has been able to vote online. However, Nabu and LBV determine a pre-selection beforehand: all candidates represent an important nature conservation issue.

The lapwing does not find enough habitat in Germany. The bird, which is about the size of a pigeon, loves wet meadows and moors. In the past, however, many of them were drained to create fields and pastures. As “Bird of the Year,” it now represents the biodiversity in our agricultural landscape, said Schäffer.