• The 3rd Incheon-Hong Kong International East Asian-Australasian Black-faced Spoonbill Conservation Cooperation Forum

    11th 13:30 to 13th January 2023 (KST) *Note: The forum will ONLY be open to registered participants As one of the events under the…


    Continue reading
  • Updates of HPAI recorded in East Asian – Australasian Flyway

    Since November 2021, a series of unprecedent outbreaks of HPAI (Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza) occurred in western Eurasia and depleted significant percentages of waterbirds and seabird populations: Barnacle Goose in Scotland, Eurasian Crane in Israel, Dalmatian Pelican in southeastern Balkans and seabirds along the coast of the Atlantic Ocean. However, no significant incidents were reported from the East Asian-Australasian Flyway except die-offs of several hundred seabirds, such as Tufted Puffins and Rhinoceros Auklets, recorded around the waters of Kunashir Islands in southern Kuril in August 2022, which no official evidence of an HPAI outbreak was indicated by the time of writing. Yet, outbreaks of HPAI was recorded in cranes and other migratory waterbirds in the EAA Flyway in recent two months. Hooded Cranes in Suncheon Bay © Suncheon City On 1 November 2022, a Hooded Crane was found dead at Izumi, Japan and about one week later it was confirmed to be HPAI positive. Numbers of dead birds escalated since, reaching a daily peak of 74 dead Hooded Cranes collected on 17 November. Dead White-naped Cranes were recorded starting on 14 November. The number of daily totals of dead cranes decreased to less than 15 carcasses found from 8 December. As of 23 December 2022, the total number of carcasses of Hooded Cranes collected at Izumi were at least 1,097 and White-naped Crane at least 47. Three Hooded Crane carcasses testing positive of HPAI were collected from Kyushu: 2 from Isahaya and 1 from Akune (Information from the website of Ministry of the Environment Japan, link). Movements of cranes departing from Izumi, Japan were observed from late November. At the same time, there was a surge in the number of Hooded Cranes wintering at Suncheon, Ro Korea. It was speculated some cranes moved from Izumi to wintering sites in Ro Korea. This was proven by Hooded Cranes tracked by Dr Li Xianda in China (from Izumi, Japan to Chonsu Bay, Ro Korea in late November 2022). However, such movement is not irregular as Dr Li’s tagged Hooded Cranes were also recorded travelling between wintering sites in Japan and Ro Korea in 2020 and 2021 (Per. comm. from Li Xianda to Simba Chan). The number of Hooded Cranes at Suncheon reached a peak of several thousand birds in late November but started to decrease to about 3,500 birds in early December. It is believed cranes moved to Chonsu Bay and Galsa Bay, other wintering sites of Hooded Cranes in Ro Korea. The first dead Hooded Crane was found at Suncheon on 13 November. As of 12 December, 158 dead Hooded Cranes and one dead White-naped Crane were found in Ro Korea. On 20 November one sick Red-crowned Crane was captured in Kushiro, Japan and it was tested HPAI positive one week later. However, this should be seen as an independent case of HPAI from the wintering grounds in western Japan. In response to the HPAI outbreak, the Crane Working Group of the EAAFP held an emergency zoom meeting on 12 December and a proposal for reactions to the HPAI in the EAAF region was submitted to the EAAFP Secretariat. The Crane Working Group also sent warnings to other crane wintering sites. So far no abnormal crane deaths has been reported from China and the wintering sites were advised not to artificially feed cranes to avoid concentrations of cranes and other wintering birds. The Crane Working Group has also contacted crane researchers in Israel on possible links between the present incident and the HPAI outbreak at Hula Valley in December 2021, in which about 8,000 Eurasian Cranes died. Advice from Israeli colleagues was to remove crane carcasses especially those in water as quickly as possible and also avoid artificial feeding that would result in concentration of birds. In late November to early December, 34 dead Oriental Storks were found near Tianjin, at the coast of Bohai, China. Poisoning from poachers and HPAI have been ruled out and the cause of death is still under investigation. On 24 November and 12 December, dead Black-faced Spoonbills were found at Mai Po Nature Reserve and Hong Kong Wetland Park in Hong Kong S.A.R. respectively, were confirmed to be HPAI positive. On 9 December another dead Black-faced Spoonbill collected at Kumamoto Prefecture, Japan was also found to be HPAI positive. It is speculated more birds may have died during migration but were not found or reported. At the time when this news release was written, catastrophic HPAI outbreaks are occurring in Latin America, particularly along the coast of Peru where more than 20,000 dead seabirds (majority Peruvian Pelicans) recorded. The massive outbreaks of HPAI that started in western Eurasia in late 2021 are now being recorded in the East Asian Australasian Flyway. The Crane Working Group contacted other species working groups and task forces and almost all agreed on actions that should be taken as soon as possible. While we proposed strategies to be discussed at meetings in 2023, we also urge managers and local stakeholders at important waterbird/seabird sites to take precautions as suggested below, and countries along the flyway should keep in close communication on new cases of outbreaks. Recommendation to important waterbird/seabird sites: Have at least one staff member in charge of biosecurity. Have a contingency plan following the guidance of national authorities in case of outbreak of avian influenza and other avian diseases. Ideally the plan will be rehearsed every year before migratory seasons so staff and volunteers of the site understand all procedures and their roles in case of emergency. Have a contact list of agencies and institutions that can provide support during an outbreak. Have regular monitoring and surveillance on wild birds, particularly when outbreaks are reported along the flyway. In case sick and/or dead birds are found, try to collect them without causing disturbance to other birds. Although the risk of HPAI transmitting to human is low, personal protective equipment has to be used when handling sick or dead birds and the methods of collection and handling should follow national guidelines. Photographing the dead bird for records and to identify the species and gender. Useful references: 2007. Wild Birds and Avian Influenza: an introduction to applied field research and disease sampling techniques. Edited by D. Whitworth, S.H. Newman, T. Mundkur and P. Harris. FAO Animal Production and Health Manual, No. 5. Rome. (download from here) CMS Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds Issues Recommendations (2022) (visit the webpage here). Hacen Mohamed El-Hacen. 2022. Workshop report: Development and consequences of the recent bird flu outbreak among Sandwich terns in the Wadden Sea and adjacent areas (download from here) Scientific Task Force on Avian Influenza and Wild Birds statement on: H5N1 Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in poultry and wild birds: Winter of 2021/2022 with focus on mass mortality of wild birds in UK and Israel (2022) (download from here) Wildlife Health Australia (2021) The sixth issue Wild Bird News June 2021 - National Avian Influenza Wild Bird Surveillance Newsletter (download from here) More references and useful links are available on webpage of Avian Influenza Working Group (link), News links:  Ministry of the Environment, Japan: 高病原性鳥インフルエンザに関する情報 | 自然環境・生物多様性 | 環境省 (env.go.jp) News about dead seabirds washed to Kunashir Islands in southern Kuril (available on 12 August, 2022, visit the webpage here) Article prepared by Crane Working Group.


    Continue reading
  • EAAFP emphasizes the importance of conserving coastal wetlands to combat climate change at the 2022 Global ESG Management Forum

    On 5th December 2022, the 2022 Global ESG Management Forum and the 2022 Incheon Ilbo ESG Management Awards Ceremony were held in Songdo Convensia, Incheon, Ro Korea. At the…


    Continue reading
  • 2022 UNESCO Suncheon Getbol World Heritage International Symposium and Asian Bird Fair in Suncheon, Ro Korea

    In November 2022, Suncheon City hosted the 2022 UNESCO World Heritage International Symposium and the 11th Asian Bird Fair at Suncheonman National Garden in Suncheon, RO Korea. The main…


    Continue reading
  • IUCN Leaders Forum Jeju 2022 urged for a global transition to a nature-positive economy

    The IUCN Leaders Forum was held on Jeju Island, ROKorea from October 13th to 15th, 2022. The theme for the conference was “Building nature-positive economies and societies.” The event…


    Continue reading
  • Linking environmental educators from Hong Kong and Incheon for conservation of migratory waterbirds

    Environmental education is key to conservation efforts. Exchanging knowledge and…


    Continue reading
  • WMBD 2022 Reports

    May 2022 Republic of Korea Event name: Ganghwa Big Bird Race (Ganghwa BBR) in Ganghwa, Ro Korea Organizer: Eco-Hub Mool Sae Al Participants: 120 birdwatchers from across the country Summary: From 30 April to 1 May 2022, birdwatchers from across the Republic of Korea gathered in Ganghwa Island, to participate in the 2022 <Ganghwa Big Bird Race>, organized by Moolsaeal, a local NGO. A total of 26 teams (14 competitive, 12 non-competitive), spent 24 hours searching for birds on the island. All birds observed had to be photographed and recorded using a  monitoring App called 'Getbol keepers'. The judges scored and ranked teams based on the records listed on the monitoring App. Read more about their activities. For more on Ganghwa BBR visit: https://ghbbr.modoo.at/?link=cgfdi6ow  Myanmar Event name: Celebration of World Migratory Bird Day through education awareness campaigns at villages near Gulf of Mottama Organizer: Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS)  Participants: 104 school students, local community members from villages around the Gulf of Mottama(GoM) and members of local conservation groups from Koe Te Su village. Summary: On 10 May 2022, the Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS) organized a World Migratory Bird Day event for Primary Schools in Koe Tae Su Village, Belin Township near GoM in Myanmar. The event raised awareness on how WMBD was formed and held annually all around the world, and educated local communities about the importance of the conservation of migratory birds and wetland ecosystems. Read more about their activities. For more photos visit the NCS Facebook page: Link Mongolia Event name: World Migratory Bird Day - 2022 Organizer: Wildlife Science and Conservation Center - Mongolia Participants: 910 participants who were mostly school students Summary: Between 12 – 20 May 2022, in cooperation with WWF Mongolia, Oyu Tolgoi LLC, and high schools of every soum (area of pastureland) in the vicinity, the Wildlife Science and Conservation Center organized a series of activities to celebrate WMBD in West, South and Eastern Mongolia. Participants enjoyed activities such as a birdwatching competition and a bird drawing competition as well as ringing stations. Read more about their activities. For more on the Wildlife Science and Conservation Center. Indonesia (Jambi Province) Event name: World Migratory Bird Day in Kuala Simbur Village, Jambi Province,  Indonesia Organizer: Wildlife Observer Community (WOC) Participants: Around 150 local community members and students Summary: Between 16 – 18 May 2022, the Wildlife Observer Community (WOC), based in Indonesia, successfully organized two WMBD events in Kuala Simbur Village, Indonesia. The events consisted of field visits, birdwatching, and presentations to increase public awareness. On 17 – 18 May, the project team also conducted an awareness-raising campaign in SD Negeri 22/X Kuala Simbur,  for local people with the goal of providing knowledge on migratory birds and their migration to local people and children near the sites. Read more about their activities. Indonesia (Aceh) Event name: Save the Light for the Future of Migratory Birds Organizer: Aceh Bird Club Participants: 100 Students, members from the general public, bird watchers and lecturers. More than 100 participants joined in on the events. Summary: On 16 – 22 May 2022, the Aceh Bird Club celebrated World Migratory Bird Day 2022 with a series of events that were carried out offline and online. Collaborating with the Himpunan Mahasiswa Biologi (HIMABIO) with the aim of inspiring more young people to care about migratory birds and their habitats, ACB invited students, members from the general public, bird watchers and lecturers to participate in the campaign activities, including a poster design competition, a short video competition, a seminar, and bird watching. Read more about their activities. Indonesia (Sumatra) Event name: Awareness of elementary school children through visit school and art drawing competition Organizer: Wild Heritage of Sumatra Foundation (WHIS) Participants: 180 students and 19 teachers from Medang Deras Sub-regency and Lima Puluh Pesisir Sub-regency, Indonesia Summary: On 27 – 28 May 2022, the Wild Heritage of Sumatra Foundation (WHIS) conducted  education programs for three elementary school students on the east coast of Batubara Regency in celebration of WMBD 2022. The activities included storytelling “Introduction to migratory shorebirds," a drawing competition, a photo exhibition and a short film screening of “Migratory Shorebirds in Batubara coastline." Read more about their activities. October 2022 Bangladesh Event name: Celebrating World Migratory Bird Day in coastal communities around Nijhum Dweep National Park – an EAAFP Flyway Network Site in Bangladesh. Organizer: Jagganath University Participants: 223 students, local community people, teachers, university students and researchers Summary: Jagannath University in Bangladesh has been organizing small to large-scale awareness campaigns to motivate and enlighten students, teachers, and the local community about the importance of conserving migratory birds and their habitats, threats to migratory birds and their ecological importance. On 6 October 2022, Jagannath University organized two World Migratory Bird Day events at two local schools, Bandartila Bazar Government Primary School and Madinatul Ulum Halimiah Madrasah, Nijhum Dweep National Park in Bangladesh. Read more about their activities. Event name: Celebration of World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in western Bangladesh Organizer: Kichir-Michir Participants: 283 students, teachers, community leaders, district officers, and community members Summary: Aiming to contribute towards the conservation of migratory birds and their habitats by mitigating threats caused by the local community along a river-adjacent area of western Bangladesh, through public awareness, educating local students and teachers and engaging the local youth to birdwatching, Kichir-Michir, with the help and presence of Bangladesh Biodiversity Conservation Federation (BBCF)  organized a 2-day event in two local communities along Padma river in the districts of Kushtia and Pabna. Read more about their activities. Hong Kong Event name: World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in Hong Kong: Fishpond For Flyway – 10th Anniversary Exhibition of Fishpond Conservation Organizer: Hong Kong Bird Watching Society Participants: 50,000 participants from the general public Summary: Since 2012, Hong Kong Bird Watching Society (HKBWS) has been implementing Hong Kong Fishpond Conservation Scheme, which aims to promote fishpond conservation through habitat management, research and education. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the scheme. To celebrate the anniversary and also World Migratory Bird Day, a 3-week exhibition was held from 29 September to 19 October 2022 in TKO Plaza, which mainly targets young families nearby. Through exhibition panels, display of decoy and bird-ringing tools, we aim to promote our 10-year-effort on fishpond conservation in HK for migratory birds along EAAF, and arouse public’s awareness on importance of fishpond. Read more about their activities. Learn more about their work: website. Indonesia Event name: World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in Indonesia with HIMPUS Organizer: HIMPUS (Poultry Lovers Association) Participants: More than 500 Students, Researchers and Birdwatchers Summary: The World Migratory Bird Day 2022 celebration this October was organized by HIMPUS (Poultry Lovers Association) Veterinary Medicine students at Syiah Kuala University, Banda Aceh, Indonesia, implementing various awareness activities that focus on community awareness and approaches for children in Aceh, Indonesia. The celebration of World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in October began with a kindergarten coloring competition held at Bungong Seulepouk Early Childhood School in Banda Aceh on 1 October 2022. Read more about their activities. Malaysia Event name: Celebration of World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in Malaysia – The Wonders of Bird Migration Around the Globe Organizer: International Centre from University Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA), Malaysian Nature Society (MNS), Terengganu Branch and the University of Tripoli, Libya Participants: 115 participants from UniSZA and Libya Summary: The International Centre from University Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA),Malaysian Nature Society (MNS), Terengganu Branch and the University of Tripoli, Libya, organized an outing where 50 participants spent the morning birdwatching and recording migratory and residential bird species on campus. Read more about their activities. Myanmar Event name: World Migratory Bird Day in Nanthar Island Marine National Park, Rakhine State Organizer: Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS) Participants: 93 participants from NCS-Myanmar, RBANCA, Aung Daing Village, Local Security Police Force and Research and Development Youths’ Society (RDYS-Sittwe) Summary: Nature Conservation Society-Myanmar (NCS) in cooperation with Rakhine Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association (RBANCA) and the Forest Department organized the second World Migratory Bird Day event for 2022 at the Buddhist monastery, Aung Daing village, Sittwe Township near Nanthar Island and Mayu Estuary Ramsar Site in Myanmar on 14 October 2022. Read more about their activities. Event name: Welcoming the migratory bird for the first time at Paleik Lake in Mandalay region, central Myanmar Organizer: Biodiversity And Nature Conservation Association, Myanmar (BANCA) Participants: 60 participants from all walks of life, mostly farmers and laborers Summary: On 1 October 2022, Biodiversity And Nature Conservation Association collaborated with the Shwe Kantharyar Nature Conservation Association, a community- based organization in Pyu Lake, and celebrated the first time of world migratory bird day event at the temple in Paleik village in Paleik village tract near the Paleik Lake is situated at the Singaing township, Kyaukse district in Mandalay region, central Myanmar. Read more about their activities. The Philippines Event name: Celebration of World Migratory Bird Day 2022 in Philippines – “Learning Event and Exhibit” by Ibaraki Academy Organizer: Ibaraki Academy Participants: 150 Students from universities, different organizations, children, friends, and family Summary: The Ibaraki Academy celebrated World Migratory Bird Day 2022, on 8-9 October 2022. The event, “Learning Event and Exhibit” was held at Veranza Mall, General Santos City, Philippines, and was divided into two parts the first being a learning event, and the second an exhibit. Read more about their activities.


    Continue reading
  • Welcoming Gochang Getbol from the Republic of Korea as Flyway Network Site, EAAF 153

    On 28th August 2022, the East Asian-Australasian Partnership welcomed a new addition to…


    Continue reading