Former declines were primarily caused by wetland drainage, shooting and persecution by fishers1,2,7. Continuing threats include disturbance from tourists and fishers, wetland alteration and destruction, water pollution, collision with overhead power-lines and over-exploitation of fish stocks3,5,7. Organochloride residues including DDT have been recorded in high levels in the eggs of this species and those of its prey19. Hunting by herders (for traditional use of the bill) continues to threaten the Mongolian population7. Nest predation by wild boar at times of low water levels is the most important threat to the Bulgarian breeding colony13. The breeding colonies in Mediterranean lagoons in Albania and Turkey are threatened by coastal developments and the alteration of the functioning of the lagoons8.
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