IBOC 2019 March 28th – April 1st, 2019, EILAT ISRAEL

Conference coordinator - Dr. Jessica Schäckermann, Eco Way Consultancy






Message from the Organizer

Dear IBOC Attendee,

I am happy to announce that the 3rd International Bird Observatory Conference (IBOC) will take place in Eilat, Israel in March 2019. The conference will host directors and staff of bird observatories from around the world in order to discuss issues such as conservation, bird related research, education and public outreach. The main goal of the IBOC is to allow representatives from all over the world to exchange ideas and methods of their everyday work and to create a global discussion that will enrich everyone involved. As the conference organizers we will do our best to provide a productive atmosphere for the discussions and to showcase the amazing birds, birding and opportunities that our region has to offer.

Most bird observatories are naturally located in bird rich areas. Previous conferences were hosted by two of the most iconic and important bird observatories in the world, the Falsterbo bird observatory in Sweden and the Cape May Bird Observatory in New Jersey USA.

We are very proud that the Israel Ornithological Center and the International Birdwatching center of Eilat were chosen to host the 3rd IBOC in Eilat. Eilat is an incredible place for birds and serves as an amazing migration "bottleneck" of real global importance.

The Conference takes place at the peak of the spring migration season which is the busiest time of the year in Eilat both in terms of birds and birdwatching events. The conference will immediately follow the Eilat Bird Festival and the world renown Champions of the Flyway bird race, allowing visitors to take part in these amazing events.

The conference is structured in a way that will allow attendees to truly experience the amazing birding Eilat has to offer with early morning birding tours before the daily programs and fantastic excursions to the best sites southern Israel has to offer after the event.

The IBOC will be based at the Isrotel "Yam Suf" hotel on Eilat's south beach. The hotel is located across the road from the Eilat Coral Beach reserve allowing visitors to snorkel, dive and experience the beautiful coral reefs and marine wildlife of the Red Sea. We are looking forward to seeing people from observatories all over the world for a meaningful conference about issues that connect us all. 

See you in Eilat!

Dan Alon – Israel Ornithological Center director

Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI)


The objectives of bird observatories around the world are to assess the needs of birds, use that assessment to educate a variety of different audiences, and ultimately support wildlife and wildlife habitat conservation. Because of this, the majority of observatories are located at strategic points of migration concentration. Data from each point is valuable, especially regarding the local needs of both the resident birds and migrants passing through. With the advent of new technologies and the pressing need to address the impacts of climate change and development, bird observatory operators are seeing greater value in bridging the gaps between individual sites and working collaboratively to ask and answer bigger questions, with a goal of imparting greater impact than the sum of their individual locations.

The first International Bird Observatory Conference (IBOC) was hosted by Falsterbo Bird Observatory in Sweden in August of 2014, followed by the second conference in October of 2017 at New Jersey Audubon’s Cape May Bird Observatory. Both events were huge successes, with each bringing together over 100 representatives of more than 74 bird observatories from five continents

IBOC 2019

On March 28th – April 1st, 2019, the Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel (SPNI) and the International Birding and Research Center Eilat (IBRCE) will host the 3rd International Bird Observatory Conference (IBOC). The SPNI is the Israeli BirdLife partner and runs a network of bird observatories across Israel. All the bird observatories of Israel, urban or in natural sites, run important habitat maintenance, intensive monitoring, research, nature conservation acts, environmental education and community programs, and eco-tourism. Located on the northern tip of Eilat, the IBRCE’s strategic geographic placement puts it within the Eurasian-African flyway of millions of migrating birds each spring and fall.


Congress Venue

Isrotel Yam-Suf Hotel is a 4-star hotel with a calm ambience, swimming pool, a conference room and is located next to the beach of the Red Sea, 300 meters from the fantastic Coral reserve and 10 minutes' drive from Eilat's bird sanctuary.

Estimated cost per night of sleeping rooms – Rooms are of high standard, have a separable twin bed and costs $110 per person in a double room with an additional person in the room for $95, $195 for a single. The Cost is for the room + a very rich breakfast and dinner. There is a possibility for a family room with 3-4 beds for a cheaper price.

250 rooms will be available for the conference.

Capacity of main meeting room, banquet room, and any break out rooms – The hotel has a modern conference room for up to 250 participants and an audio system with the possibility to serve light food and coffee in the hall.

The banquet dinner will be held at the bird sanctuary Eilat that can host 250 people (under the starry sky).

Meals, including breakfast, lunch, dinner and coffee breaks and reception for 3–5 days are included in the participation fee. The final banquet dinner is NOT included.



The Eilat Field School is a comfortable but simple and clean hostel that can host 4 in a room. The costs for B&B is $75 per person in a single, $110 for 2 in a room ($55 per person), $ 145 for 3 in a room ($49 per person) and $185 for 4 in a room ($47 per person), per night, including a simple breakfast. The field school also has a good camping facility with showers for $18 per person per night.

The Field School is 5 minutes' walk from the conference hotel and they have about 100 rooms.


Contact Us

Dr. Jessica Schäckermann, conference coordinator.



Orientation and Travel

There are reasonably-priced international direct flights to Ovda Airport in Eilat (VDA). However, for those who choose to fly to Ben Gurion Airport (TLV) in Tel Aviv, the best options are to then take either a local flight or bus to Eilat, both of which can be similarly priced. If taking the bus, take the train from Terminal 3 in TLV to Tel Aviv Ha’Hagana, and walk (approximately 15 minutes) to Tel Aviv Central Bus Station. Keep in mind that the train does not run FROM 12:00-6:00 am and from Friday www.rail.co.il/en. Bus seats need to be reserved in advance (www.egged.co.il). 

Nearest Airport: The nearest airport is the new Ramon airport, due to open on October 2018, 20 KM away from town, connected by a public shuttle bus. Ramon airport is served by flights from many European cities and from Tel aviv airport. If the Ramon airport will not open on time, Ovda airport will be served from European destinations; it is 60 KM from Eilat and served by a shuttle bus. Flights from Tel aviv land in Eilat airport which is in the center of town.

Tel aviv airport is connected to a wide variety of airports around the world. From Tel Aviv airport one can take an onward flight to Eilat (40 minutes), rent a car (320 KM, 3.5 hours' drive through great scenery and birding sites) or we will arrange our own shuttle bus to Eilat (if there will be demand for it).

From Tel aviv

  • Plane: 50 minutes via Arkia or Israir Airlines.

  • Car: 320 km, 3.5-4 hours via the Negev Desert (great birding along the way).

  • Bus: Approximately 4.5 hours from Tel Aviv Central Bus Station. 72NIS.

From Jerusalem

  • Car: 4 hours via the Dead Sea.

  • Bus: Approximately 4.25 hours from Jerusalem Central Bus Station. 70NIS.

From New York

~10 hours to TLV from JFK International Airport.

From Eastern Europe

~ 3-4 hours to TLV or Ramon Airport.

From Western Europe

~4 hours to TLV or Ramon Airport.

From Africa

Direct flights available to TLV via Ethiopian Airlines, Turkish Airlines, or other European and African carriers.

From Asia

Direct flights available to TLV via El Al, Aeroflot, Turkish Airlines, Korean Air, or other European and Asian carriers.


From Ramon airport​

  • Car: 47 minutes.

  • Bus #393: 1 hourr 40 min from Be’er Ora Junction.​

From Eilaat Central Bus Station

  • Taxi: 11 minutes. ~30NIS.

  • Bus #15: 24 minutes. ~5NIS.

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