Memorandum of Understanding Signed Between the AEWA Secretariat and ACBK to Bolster Sociable Lapwing Conservation

Samarkand, Uzbekistan, 12 February 2024 - The Secretariat of the Agreement on the Conservation of African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbirds (UNEP/AEWA Secretariat) and the Association for the Conservation of Biodiversity of Kazakhstan (ACBK) renewed their partnership during a side event on the margins of the 14th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (COP14), which began in Samarkand today.

The renewed partnership was formalized through the official signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), which aims to enhance collaborative efforts in the conservation and management of migratory waterbirds, with a particular focus on the Sociable Lapwing (Vanellus gregarius), one of the critically endangered species protected under AEWA.

AEWA is the inter-governmental treaty in the African-Eurasian region dedicated to the conservation of migratory waterbirds. Its primary focus includes the conservation and sustainable use of migratory waterbird populations and their habitats.

Among the primary implementation tools of the treaty are the AEWA International Single Species Action Plans (ISSAPs), such as the one that already exists for the Sociable Lapwing, which is a joint plan with the Convention on Migratory Species. ISSAPs are developed to implement coordinated measures to restore migratory waterbird populations to a favourable conservation status through fostered international cooperation among the species’ range states for the benefit of individual AEWA species.

ACBK, which is the official national BirdLife International Partner in Kazakhstan, aims to conserve and restore biodiversity within Kazakhstan and the region while fostering partnerships to benefit nature, climate, and people.

The MoU signifies a shared commitment between the two entities towards the conservation, protection, and sustainable use of migratory waterbirds and their habitats.

From left to right:  Mr Sergey Dereliev, Head of Science, Implementation and Compliance, UNEP/AEWA Secretariat, Mr Abdurashid Sadikov, Ministry of Ecology, Environmental Protection and Climate Change of Uzbekistan, Mr Jacques Trouvilliez, AEWA Executive Secretary, Vera Voronova, ACBK Executive Director, Andrey Kim, Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources, Committee of Forestry and Wildlife, Kazakhstan © Nicky Petkov 

Coordinated Action for the Sociable Lapwing

The Sociable Lapwing is critically endangered according to the IUCN Red List, and is placed on the annexes of AEWA and CMS. Breeding primarily in Kazakhstan and Russia, they migrate through Russia, Turkey, and the Middle East to winter in Africa and the Arabian Peninsula while another migration path leads through Central Asia into wintering areas on the Indian sub-continent. Illegal killing and habitat loss threaten the species. The goal of the Single Species Action Plan is to restore the Sociable Lapwing's population, ultimately removing it from the IUCN Red List threatened categories. Measures agreed by the Range States of the species include strengthened legislation, hunting regulations enforcement, and habitat conservation across breeding, migration, and wintering areas.

Key Objectives of the MoU

The MoU outlines several key objectives and areas of cooperation between the AEWA Secretariat and ACBK. Central amongst those is the coordination of the AEWA Sociable Lapwing International Working Group (AEWA SL IWG) and of the implementation of the Sociable Lapwing ISSAP. For this purpose, ACBK will be providing a part-time position to fulfil the function of coordinator for the AEWA SL IWG.

“The partnership renewed in Samarkand today, exemplifies the collective commitment of the AEWA Secretariat and ACBK towards the preservation of biodiversity in Central Asia and beyond. I am confident that this renewed cooperation will significantly boost our collective efforts to improve the flyway-scale conservation of the Sociable Lapwing through the ISSAP,” said Jacques Trouvilliez, Executive Secretary of AEWA.

The signing of this MoU marks a significant step forward in the joint efforts of the AEWA Secretariat and ACBK towards the conservation of migratory waterbirds, particularly the Sociable Lapwing. By fostering collaboration, sharing resources, and leveraging expertise, both parties aim to make tangible contributions toward the protection of this endangered species and its habitats.

“ACBK has worked on Sociable Lapwing research and conservation since 2006, building knowledge about the species' migration routes and investigating threats on their nesting grounds. Our work has also helped raise awareness about this unique, yet critically endangered species, which serves as a key indicator for steppe ecosystem in Kazakhstan. Over the past five years, ACBK has continued to build our internal capacity to coordinate and support efforts among range state partners to enable joint conservation efforts for Sociable Lapwing along its migration routes. By signing this MoU with the AEWA Secretariat, we are fully committed to formally coordinating the International Working Group,” said Vera Voronova, Executive Director of ACBK.


Dernière mise à jour le 15 February 2024

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Vanellus gregarius
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