Thursday, December 12, 2019

IUCN Situation Report on Yellow Sea

IUCN has just released the "IUCN situation analysis on East and Southeast Asian intertidal habitats, with particular reference to the Yellow Sea (including the Bohai Sea)".

The report presents an analysis of ~390 coastal sites used by waterbirds along the East Asian-Australasian Flyway (EAAF) and identifies 16 key areas. The findings presented show that there is cause for significant concern over the status of the intertidal zone along the EAAF. Fisheries and vital ecological services are collapsing and ecological disasters increasing, with concomitant implications for human livelihoods. Observed rates of declines of waterbird species of 5–9% per year (and up to 26% per year for Critically Endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper Eurynorhynchus pygmeus) are among the highest of any ecological system on the planet. Breeding success among migrating species in their Arctic breeding grounds and survival on most wintering grounds (for northern breeding species) at the southern end of their migrations appears satisfactory, at least where hunting is sustainable. However, problems clearly are occurring along the EAAF during migration. Unless major steps are taken to reverse current trends, the EAAF is likely to experience extinctions and associated collapses of essential and valuable ecological services in the near future. There are 2 motions [M32 and M66] about the Yellow Sea to be discussed at the IUCN World Conservation Congress to be held 6-15 September in South Korea. The report can be downloaded at: www.iucn.org/asiancoastalwetlands

OSNZ has encouraged the IUCN Committee to respond favourably to motions about the Yellow Sea at the IUCN Congress. The OSNZ report sent to the IUCN Committee is available here.

Further information on threats to the EAAF can be found at: http://www.birdlife.org/community/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/Asian-Coastal-Wetlands-leaflet-v2-preview.pdf