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Waterbird survey

  • Category
    Environment
  • Published
    17th Jan, 2019
  • A waterbird survey conducted in the Upper Kuttanad region of Kerala has recorded 16,767 birds of 47 continental and local species.
  • The survey, conducted as part of the annual Asian Waterbird Census, has spotted three new species — Greater flamingo, Grey-headed lapwing, and Blue-cheeked bee-eater.

Context

  • A waterbird survey conducted in the Upper Kuttanad region of Kerala has recorded 16,767 birds of 47 continental and local species.
  • The survey, conducted as part of the annual Asian Waterbird Census, has spotted three new species — Greater flamingo, Grey-headed lapwing, and Blue-cheeked bee-eater.

About

Asian Waterbird Census

  • It is a part of global waterbird monitoring programme of International Waterbird Census (IWC) carried out each January as a voluntary activity and coordinated by Wetlands International. It runs in parallel with other regional programmes of the International Waterbird Census in Africa, Europe, West Asia, the Neotropics and the Caribbean.
  • It was initiated in 1987 in the Indian subcontinent and since has grown rapidly to cover major region of Asia, from Afghanistan eastwards to Japan, Southeast Asia and Australasia.
  • Presently, the census covers the entire East Asian – Australasian Flyway and a large part of the Central Asian Flyway.

 Objectives

  • To obtain information on an annual basis of waterbird populations at wetlands in the region during the non-breeding period of most species (January).
  • To monitor on an annual basis the status and condition of wetlands.
  • To encourage greater interest in waterbirds and wetlands amongst citizens.

Significance

The information collected is available to a wide range of government agencies and non-government organizations and contributes to conservation activities from the local to global level, including:

  • raising awareness of waterbirds and waterbird conservation issues;
  • supporting local conservation activities at wetlands;
  • the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, in identifying and monitoring wetlands of international importance;
  • the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), by monitoring the status of migratory waterbirds and their habitats;
  • the Convention on Biological Diversity‘s (CBD) goal in conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity;
  • implementation of the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership Initiative (EAAFP) and Central Asian Flyway Action Plan through monitoring important and Flyway Network sites;
  • BirdLife International’s Important Bird Area (IBA) Programme;
  • IUCN/BirdLife International’s Global Species Programme (Red List);
  • Wetlands International’s Waterbird Population Estimates programme.


                                                             Some Important conventions

    Ramsar Convention on Wetlands

    • Signed in Ramsar, Iran, in 1971, it is an intergovernmental treaty which provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.
    • There are presently 162 Contracting Parties to the Convention.

    Convention on Migratory Species (CMS)

    • As an environmental treaty under the aegis of the UNEP, CMS provides a global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory animals and their habitats.

    Convention on Biological Diversity‘s (CBD)

    • Known informally as the Biodiversity Convention, it is a multilateral treaty with three main goals: the conservation of biological diversity; the sustainable use of its components; and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources.
    • It entered into force in 1993.
    • It has two supplementary agreements
      • The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty governing the movements of living modified organisms (LMOs) resulting from modern biotechnology from one country to another.
      • The Nagoya Protocol aims at implementation of one of the three objectives of the CBD: the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources, thereby contributing to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

 

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