Join us for the Asian Waterbird Census 2019

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The Asian Waterbird Census (AWC) is part of the global International Waterbird Census (IWC). This citizen-science programme is supporting conservation and management of wetlands and waterbirds worldwide.

The information helps to promote the designation and management of internationally important sites such as nationally protected areas, Ramsar Sites, Western/Central Asian Site Network for Siberian Cranes and Other Waterbirds, East Asian – Australasian Flyway Network Sites and Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBAs) as well as helps in identifying and protecting new sites of importance for waterbirds. The result of the census and information are also used to promote national waterbird and wetland conservation and international cooperation along the Central Asian Flyway and East Asian – Australasian Flyway.

Photo Credit: Eugene Cheah/Wetlands International

 

Participate in the AWC 2019 count programme!

The recommended dates are January 5 – 20,  2019 covering two weeks and three weekends, when we should encourage you to count waterbirds. These dates are for guidance only and counts from any date in January are very welcome.

Guidance and Reporting 

If you have participated in a previous count for a particular site, kindly cover the site this year and report on it using the latest count submission forms. We encourage you to cover as many sites as possible and encourage more participation. Submission of forms should be done by end February 2019 at the latest.

Protocol for waterbird counting : A general introduction to counting waterbirds for the International Waterbird Census. Updated December 2018.

Digitising Site Boundaries : Drawing the boundaries of a site or count area on a map is key to ensuring consistent coverage from year to year. This is a simple guidance to the various options to make digital boundaries for sites and submit these with your counts. Updated December 2018.

Counting across Asia-Australasia

(for India, please see next section)

AWC data submission can be in three ways:

  1. AWC Data Entry Forms in Excel

For this year, we are providing two options. In the first, the counter can use the dropdown menu option to enter the waterbird species. In the latter, these are pre-entered as a flat form and so only need for the number to be entered. Either form can be used.

2. AWC Wetland Assessment 2019 in MS Word

Submit these forms to your coordinator country/regional coordinator. If there is no, kindly send your forms to [email protected] or if submissions are to be made by post, forms should be sent to Wetlands International South Asia office

3. AWC Wetland Assessment Form 2019 in Google Form

For AWC 2019, we are testing a new Wetland Assessment Form for participants to submit standardised information on the status and potential threats to wetlands and waterbirds observed their visit. This complements the waterbird count forms you normally submit. We encourage you to submit an entry for each site you cover. National Coordinators will be able to summarise in their reports and we intend to prepare a regional summary.

Also, for those familiar with eBird (and its mobile application), we are testing the option for you to submit your Wetland Assessment Information for each wetland covered and submitted through eBird. So after you upload your counts to eBird, kindly fill out the Google AWC Wetland Assessment Form 2019.

To ensure that we are able to produce complete national AWC overviews, only eBird submissions accompanied by an AWC-eBird Wetland Assessment Form 2019 will be accepted and processed. Kindly complete the regular eBird count and this form for each site separately. Please share your checklists with our eBird handle AsianWaterbirdCensus.

In India

The AWC is jointly coordinated by the Bombay Natural History Society and Wetlands International. Do be aware of the following:

A reference list of internationally important AWC sites and wetland IBAs in India that we encourage you to cover during these counts.

AWC India data submission can be in one of three ways (as in 2018):

  1. AWC India Data Entry Form in Excel

For this year, we are providing two options. In the first, the counter can use the dropdown menu option to enter the waterbird species. In the latter, these are pre-entered as a flat form and so only need for the number to be entered.  Either form can be used.

2. AWC India Wetland Assessment 2019 in MS WordKindly re-download if saved file between 1 – 21 December

Kindly provide completed forms through your State Coordinator, with a copy to [email protected] and [email protected]. If there is no State Coordinator, kindly send them directly to [email protected] and [email protected] If submissions are to be made by post, forms should be sent to Wetlands International South Asia, A-25, Second floor, Defence Colony, New Delhi, 110024, India.

3.  AWC India Wetland Assessment Form 2019 in Google Form

For those familiar with eBird (and its mobile application), since AWC 2016, we have introduced an online data submission through the eBird India platform developed in collaboration with Bird Count India and Bombay Natural History Society. For each wetland covered, upload your counts to eBird and fill out the Google AWC eBird Wetland Assessment Form 2019.

Do note that only eBird submissions accompanied by this form will be accepted and included in the national AWC overview. So kindly complete the regular eBird count and this Wetland Assessment Form for each site separately. Please share your checklists with our eBird handle awcindia.

Participants are requested to submit both by end of February 2019. If you have any questions, please contact [email protected] and [email protected].

 

Generating support for monitoring


Through the newly established global Waterbird Fund www.waterbird.fund, we can now receive dedicated funds to channel to our network to fill geographic gaps, strengthen local capacity to implement monitor waterbirds as well as remote wetlands that are not being regularly counted. We aim to target new funding sources to secure contributions to support our network, including conservation organisations, governments, birders, hunters and their clubs and associations, foundations, as well as the public with an interest in waterbirds and the environment.Do consider making a donation to help strengthening monitoring in the region.

We invite your active participation to make this special year count for waterbird and wetland conservation on the ground!