GLOBE Side Navigation

GLOBE Alumni Facilitate International Discussion on Migratory Bird Patterns and Global Environmental Concerns

students looking at the lecture

On Wednesday, 13 October 2010, the "Study of Migratory Birds as Bioindicators of Climate" project held its first video conference between the San Ignacio de Recalde School in Lima, Peru, and Innoko River School in Shageluk, Alaska, United States. The project promotes the exchange of information on migratory birds, from the subarctic polar zone of Alaska to the tropical zone of Peru, allowing students to learn how migration patterns correlate to temperature and food availability, and to explore the diversity of cultures between countries. The project is scheduled to last at least one year in order to cover the full migration cycle.


Matt Fenzel, the North American Alumni Representative, and Juan Diego Calvo-Perez Rodo, the Latin American Alumni Representative, facilitated this GLOBE School Pal (GS-Pal) event entitled "An Exploration of the Seasonal Indicators in My Local Environment." GS-Pal, a GLOBE Alumni sponsored international student research project, promotes international classroom communication in order to educate students on environmental issues. GS-Pal, developed in conjunction with GLOBE's ESSP Seasons and Biomes, brings students, scientists, and alumni together to collaborate on educational projects. Founded under the principal of Pen-Pals, GS-Pal uses web technologies to expose students to a globalized world and provide the opportunity for them to speak and learn with peers from various countries and cultures."

The video conference agenda included:

  • Teacher and student presentations from both countries;
  • Presentations on biotic and abiotic characteristics of the zones of study;
  • Discussion on biological diversity of the zones of study, with emphasis on temperature and presence of registered migratory and resident birds; and
  • Dialogue on global environmental issues.


The event aimed to facilitate reflection that allows students to offer solutions to global environmental issues. The video conference enriched the students' realm of knowledge by addressing diverse realities and discussing different points of view. Additional video conferences, involving presentations and discussions covering the relationships as well as the similarities and differences of migratory birds in both regions, will occur throughout the year as the students progress in their research.

students looking at lecture

Prior to the event, 9th grade San Ignacio de Recalde students visited the RĂ­mac River Basin and Pantanos de Villa Wetlands to collect environmental data at each sighting point of the migratory birds. The students studied the relationship between temperature and the presence of migratory birds. After collecting data concerning biotic and abiotic factors of both zones, students met at school, analyzed the data, reviewed information on the migration times of the selected birds while considering the meteorological characteristics of these times, and reflected on the repercussions the activities conducted by the Lima population may have on these birds.

students looking at lecture

The students at the Innoko River School in Shageluk, Alaska have been gathering bird arrival and departure dates since 1998 and are able to share this data with the Peruvian students of San Ignacio de Recalde. Elders from the community have discussed traditional cultural stories with the students and shared their observations of the birds as well. The migratory birds study successfully prepared the Peruvian and Alaskan students to engage in knowledgeable dialogue during the conference. Students from both Peru and Alaska utilized their GLOBE experiences in the discussion of global environmental concerns during this successful video conference made possible thanks to the effort of the GLOBE Teachers and GLOBE Students in coordination with GLOBE Alumni and the coordinating office of GLOBE Peru located at the Ministry of the Environment in Lima.

To view additional conference photos from San Ignacio de Recalde:

-Visit the school's website

-Select "Photo Gallery"

-Locate "VIDEO CONFERENCE, Colegio San Ignacio de Recalde E Innoko RIVER SCHOOL"

-Select "View Gallery"

View these videos for a closer look at Innoko River School's GLOBE Research:

20 December 2010


This was a wonderful project that we had great intentions of actually sharing data about our mutually shared migratory birds. We did exchange some stories about our mutually shared birts but no data.

We are planning to revive this project sometime in September 2014.
Joyanne Hamilton
Innoko River School
Shageluk, Alaska