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UN report reveals alarming state of migratory species

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A comprehensive assessment of migratory species has not yet been carried out. The report provides a global overview of the conservation status and population trends of migratory animals, as well as the latest information on the major threats they pose and successful efforts to save them.

Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program, said: “Today’s report shows that unsustainable human activities threaten the future of migratory species, creatures that not only signal environmental change but also play an indispensable role in survival and sustainable development .” the complex ecosystems of our planet develop.

The global community has an opportunity to translate the latest scientific findings about the pressures faced by migratory species into concrete conservation measures. Given the precarious situation of many of these animals, we cannot hesitate and must work together to put the recommendations into action.”

Each year, billions of animals migrate across land, oceans, rivers and airways, across national and continental borders, some traveling thousands of kilometers to feed and reproduce.

Migratory species play a critical role in maintaining the world’s ecosystems and provide important benefits by pollinating plants, transporting vital nutrients, hunting pests and helping to store carbon dioxide.

The CMS Report on the State of Global Migratory Species, prepared for CMS by conservation scientists at the United Nations World Environment Program Monitoring Center (UNEP-WCMC), uses datasets to document global species and includes input from experts from organizations such as BirdLife International, International . Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and Zoological Society of London (ZSL).

Migratory species in serious danger

The report focuses on the 1,189 animal species for which CMS sites require international protection and are included in the CMS appendices, but also includes analyzes of more than 3,000 additional migratory species not included in the CMS.

The species listed in the Appendices are species that are threatened with extinction throughout all or most of their range or that require concerted international action to improve their conservation status.

“Migratory species rely on different specific habitats at different times in their life cycle,” said CMS Executive Director Amy Frankel.

To get to these places they have to travel regularly, sometimes thousands of kilometers. They face enormous challenges and threats along the way and in the places where they breed or feed.

When species cross national borders, their survival depends on the efforts of all countries in which they live. “This groundbreaking report will help support urgently needed policy actions to ensure the continued development of migratory species around the world.”

While positive trends are evident for many CMS-listed species, the report’s findings underscore that further action is needed for all migratory species.

The inclusion of species in the CMS means that these species require international cooperation for their protection.
However, many of the threats these species face are responsible for global environmental changes, affecting both biodiversity loss and climate change. Addressing the decline of migratory species therefore requires action from governments, the private sector and other organizations.

Over the past 30 years, 70 CMS-listed migratory species, including steppe eagles, vultures and camels, have faced increasing threats. In contrast, only 14 species listed in the appendix currently have improved conservation status, including blue and humpback whales, sea eagles and spoonbills.

Most worryingly, almost all fish species listed in the CMS (sharks, rays and migratory sturgeons) are threatened with extinction and their populations have declined by 90% since the 1970s.

By analyzing threats to species, the report shows to what extent the decline in the number of migratory species is due to human activity.

The two greatest threats to both CMS-listed species and all confirmed migratory species are over-exploitation, including unsustainable hunting, overfishing and unsustainable harvesting, for example in fisheries, and habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation due to Activities such as agriculture and development.

A key priority is to map key sites that serve as breeding, feeding and reproductive areas for migratory species and take appropriate conservation measures.

The report found that nearly 10,000 global critical biodiversity areas important to migratory species are covered by CMS applications, but more than half (by region) are not designated as protected areas or protected areas. 58% of important areas for CMS-listed species are threatened by human activity.

The report also analyzes how many migratory species are at risk of extinction but are not covered by the Convention. 399 migratory species, mostly birds and fish, including many species of albatrosses and finches, sharks and rays, have been identified as threatened or endangered but have not yet been included in the CMS findings.

The report highlights the worrying situation of many species, shows that recovery of populations and entire species is possible, and highlights success stories based on policy changes and positive actions at local and international levels. Examples include local coordination efforts to reduce illegal birds, which use 91% of the chip network, and highly successful integrated maintenance and rehabilitation in Kazakhstan, where the saiga antelope is no longer destined.

The state of migration in the world provides a clear focus and provides some priority recommendations for activities, including:

Improve and expand efforts to combat the apprehension of illegal and unstably migratory species and the accidental capture of biased species,

Increased activities to identify, protect, combine and effectively manage key sites for migratory species.

Urgently transitioned to higher rates of species extinction, including almost all fish species covered by CMS,

Expand efforts to prevent climate change as well as lighting, sound, chemicals and plastic, etc

Consider expanding CMS applications to many endangered species that require national and international attention.

The United Nations Conference on Wildlife (CPS COP14), which begins today in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, is one of the most important global meetings on biodiversity since the adoption of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework.

It will also be the first COP under a global environmental agreement to take place in Central Asia, a region home to many migratory bird species, including saiga antelopes, snow leopards and many migratory birds.
Governments, environmental groups and scientists met for a week to explore ways to speed up implementation of the convention.

The report on the status of global migratory species will provide the scientific basis and policy recommendations needed to set the context and provide valuable information to support discussions at the meeting.

The report will be released at the opening press conference of the 14th session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CPS COP14) in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. Follow the live broadcast of the press conference:

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