New EAAFP Flyway Network Sites in Myanmar

Union of Myanmar became as member of EAAFP since 27th July 2014. After that, Moeyungyi Wildlife Sanctuary, Indawgyi Wildlife Sanctuary and Gulf of Mottama were designated as Flyway Network Siites respectively. In 2018, two new sites (Nanthar Island and Mayyu Estuaries and Meinmahla Kyun Wildlife Sanctuary) are designated as Flyway Network Sites.

Photo: Nanthar Island ©BANCA

Nanthar Island is located on the coast of Rakhine (formerly Arakan) State in western Myanmar, not far from the state capital, Sittwe city, and the international border with Bangladesh. Rakhine is bounded to the north by Chin State, and to the east by Magway, Bago and Ayeyarwady divisions. Nanthar Island (c. 3608 ha) consists of a mosaic of mangrove forests, low-lying sand banks and intertidal mudflats at the mouth of Mayu, Lemyo and Kalendan River. There are five villages close to Nanthar and the local fishing communities often fishing the inshore waters surrounding the island. The Critically Endangered Spoon-billed Sandpiper Calidris pymaeus has been recorded annually on Nanthar since 2008, with counts of 23-36 individuals (c. 10 % of the global population, based on a global population estimate of 242-378 individuals, circa. Zöckler et al.2016). Other globally threatened migratory species includes the Nordmann’s Greenshank Tringa guttifer (Endangered) (max. 5 individuals), and up to 150 Great Knot Calidris tenuirostris (Endangered) in small congregations.

EAAFP 10th MOP was held in Hainan China, Myanmar government delegation received the site notification certificates in official event. After that, with the financial supports of EAAFP, Forest Department, Nature and Wildlife Conservation Division, Biodiversity And Nature Conservation Association (BANCA -BirdLife Myanmar) and local partner Rakhine Biodiversity And Nature Conservation (RBANCA) are jointly organized the site designation ceremony at Agnu Maw village, near the Nanthar Island in Rakhine State on 5th January 2019.

Photo: Site visits at Nanthar Island© BANCA

Photo: Opening remark by Forest Department © BANCA

State parliament members, Forest Department and Fishery Department, General Administrative Department, Villages Head, Local Conservation Group members and community are attended. This is the first Flyway Network Site in Rakhnie State and also pioneer site in coastal area. Nanthar Island and Mayyu Estuaries is not only importance for water birds but also importance for sea turtle nesting area. This site is close to Sittwe and need to promote as ecotourism site in near future.

Information signboard at Nanthar Island© BANCA

Myanmar government representative, Mrs. Thin Thin Yu receiving the EAAFP Flyway Network Site Certificate during the EAAFP MOP 10 © Eugene Cheah/EAAFP

Article prepared by Biodiversity And Nature Conservation Association (BANCA -BirdLife Myanmar)

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