[Ontbirds]Habitat Conservation Issue - Korea

Mark Cranford mark.cranford at ofo.ca
Mon Apr 3 22:24:41 EDT 2006


Posting on behalf of Jim Coey,  Misssauga

This may be the final stage in an on-going battle to save critical 
stopover habitat for shorebirds in east Asia.

Mark Cranford
Ontbirds Coordinator
Mississauga, Ont.
mark.cranford at ofo.ca

----- Original Message -----
From: Birdskorea at aol.com
To: spoonbillkorea at yahoo.com
Sent: Sunday, April 02, 2006 3:57 AM
Subject: Joint Saemangeum Monitoring Programme: April 02 Update

Dear Members,

Birds Korea and the Australasian Waders Study Group (AWSG) have started 
preliminary investigation and on-site groundwork for the Joint 
Saemangeum Monitoring Programme (for more details please see 
http://www.birdskorea.org/timetoact.asp). Nial Moores,  Dr. Phil 
Battley, and John Geale have been at Saemangeum since the evening of the 
30th March.


Key points:

1) Tides are still flowing into the Saemangeum area. There is therefore 
still a large gap in the seawall - but developers are claiming that the 
Saemangeum seawall will be completed on April 24th 2006 ie in just three 
weeks time.  We need to do all that we can to raise the interest of 
international media and register international disgust (eg mailing 
Korean embassies).

2) Bird numbers are in the meantime building well, including ca 1300 Far 
Eastern Curlew, 1800 Great Knot and 11 000 Dunlin in Dongjin yesterday 
(April 1st).

3) Progress is being made in organising events and workshops to involve 
more people and raise awareness (domestically and internationally) of 
both Saemangeum and of the need for focused monitoring of this 
reclamation project to fully gauge its impact on the shorebirds that 
stage here.

5) The characterisation of the Programme by a very few people as 
unnneccesary interference in domestic issues by a non-Korean group (ie 
Birds Korea) has happily opened up good opportunities for us to prove 
that we are - as we have always said - a domestic (Korean-based) group, 
one with a strong international outreach (eg AWSG) but also one seeking 
cooperation where we can with key individuals and organisations within 
Korea.
(Birds Korea already has around 200 fee-paying domestic members, as well 
as 400 international members overseas, and in the past week  we have 
been joined by 25 new members (Korean nationals), with 2 further members 
re-confirming membership for the year ahead.)

6) Donations which we received for the Programme are now being used for 
vehicle rental and to fund other logistical support. Again we would like 
to thank very much all those who donated to the Programme, and would 
like to remind everyone that more support would still be very welcome!

7) Internet access in the immediate area is a little limited but we will 
be posting details of shorebird counts etc as often as we possibly can: 
please check the website for updates at 
http://www.birdskoreaorg/birds_latest.asp.


A huge amount of work has gone into evolving this project over the last 
six months, and we are confident that the data we will obtain here will 
be internationally significant and of long-term value. One aim is of 
course to show the terrible impact on shorebirds of this catastrophic 
and redundant form of habitat destruction - and in doing so we will be 
in a much stronger position to react should another reclamation in Korea 
ever be announced.

Thanks again - as ever - for your interest and support.

Nial and Charlie Moores, Park Meena, Kim SuKyung
Birds Korea: The national and international network dedicated to the 
conservation
of birds and their habitats.

http://www.birdskorea.org
birdskorea at aol.com
-- 

Mark Cranford
ONTBIRDS Coordinator
Mississauga, Ont.
mark.cranford at ofo.ca
905 279 9576


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