Target 11: Migratory species and their habitats which provide important ecosystem services are maintained at or restored to favourable conservation status, taking into account the needs of women, indigenous and local communities, and the poor and vulnerable.


Anthropogenic Impact


►   The CMS COP Resolution 11.29 (Rev. COP12) on Sustainable Boat-based Marine Wildlife Watching includes:

1) Urges Parties, in whose areas of jurisdiction commercial operations involving marine boat-based wildlife watching take place, to adopt appropriate measures, such as national guidelines, codes of conduct, and if necessary, national legislation, binding regulations or other regulatory tools, to promote ecologically sustainable wildlife watching.


Aquatic Species


►    The MoU concerning conservation measures for marine turtles of the Atlantic coast of Africa: Conservation and Management Plan for Marine Turtles of the Atlantic coast of Africa includes:

Objective 1 - Reduce direct and indirect causes of marine turtle mortality:

1.3.1) Undertake socio-economic studies on communities that interact with marine turtles and their habitats.

►    The Conservation and Management Plan of the Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation and Management of Marine Turtles and their Habitats of the Indian Ocean and South-East Asia (IOSEA Marine Turtle MoU) includes:

Objective 1 - Reduce direct and indirect causes of marine turtle mortality:

1.5.b) Assess the level and impact of traditional harvest on marine turtles and their eggs.

1.5.c) Establish management programmes that may include limits on levels of intentional harvest.

1.5.d) Determine the cultural and traditional values and economic uses of marine turtles (both consumptive and non-consumptive).

1.5.e) Negotiate, where appropriate, management agreements on the sustainable level of traditional harvest, in consultation with other concerned States, to ensure that such harvest does not undermine conservation efforts.

►    The Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation and Management of Dugongs (Dugon dugong) and their Habitats throughout their Range (Dugong MoU) includes:

Objective 1 – Reduce direct and indirect causes of dugong mortality:

1.5) Ensure that subsistence and customary use of dugong is sustainable in areas where it is permitted.

Objective 5 – Raise awareness of dugong conservation:

5.2) Consult with local communities to encourage their active participation in conservation efforts.


Avian Species

►    The CMS COP Resolution 11.17 (Rev.COP12) on Migratory Landbirds in the African-Eurasian Region includes:

 1. Adopts the “African-Eurasian Migratory Landbirds Action Plan (AEMLAP)” (the Action Plan), and its Annexes, contained in Annex II of document UNEP/CMS/COP11/Doc.23.1.4/Rev.1 and urges Parties and encourages non-Parties and stakeholders to implement the Action Plan as a matter of priority, especially in line with the AEMLAP Programme of Work 2016-2020;

►    The African-Eurasian Migratory Landbirds Action Plan (AEMLAP) includes:

Objective 1 - Habitat conservation: Conservation and/or design of such agricultural landscapes needs to be promoted through agricultural policy and advocacy, integrating considerations of biodiversity and the requirements of migratory landbird species with the provision of ecosystem services, and measures for combating poverty, desertification and the longer-term effects of climate change whilst taking account of food, water and energy security imperatives. Consideration of where to site new intensive agricultural development zones should therefore ideally be addressed by national or regional Strategic Environmental Assessments that bring together all of these sectors.




►    The CMS COP Resolution 12.24 (Manila 2017) on Promoting Marine Protected Areas Networks in the ASEAN Region

1. Calls upon Parties to continue development of transboundary area-based conservation measures including marine protected areas, particularly in the ASEAN Region;

2. Encourages Parties and other Range States of the ASEAN Region to participate in promoting marine protected area networks and connectivity that will improve the identification and governance of important sites for migratory species and support internationally coordinated conservation and management, with support from the CMS Scientific Council, where appropriate;


►    The  CMS COP Resolution 12.25 (Manila 2017) on Promoting Conservation of Critical Intertidal and Other Coastal Habitats for Migratory Species includes: 

1. Calls on Parties, as a matter of urgency, to enhance significantly their efforts to conserve and promote the sustainable use of intertidal wetlands and other coastal habitats of importance for migratory species worldwide;

Protected areas

5. Urges Parties, in line with Target 10 of the Strategic Plan for Migratory Species 2015- 2023, to give urgent protection to remaining intertidal wetlands and associated coastal habitats of international importance, especially but not exclusively, in coastal regions that are suffering high rates of intertidal wetland loss, notably in Asia, paying particular attention to those sites that form part of the critical site networks of migratory species, such as the EAAFP Flyway Site Network and the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network;

6. Urges also Parties with appropriately qualifying intertidal sites to consider them for nomination as World Heritage Sites as well as Ramsar Sites, including as serial transboundary sites as appropriate, and thus for waterbirds and other migratory species potentially forming ecological site networks with other key sites, in line with Resolution 11.25, and building on the approach of the Wadden Sea Flyway Initiative;

7. Encourages Parties to ensure that intertidal protected area boundaries include the entire ecosystem of importance to migratory waterbirds and other dependent migratory species, including inland roost sites; and urges Parties to review and modify boundaries of relevant protected areas to this end and create new protected areas as appropriate;

Solutions to loss of intertidal flats

8. Encourages Parties to recognize fully the international importance of their intertidal wetlands for migratory species and ecosystem services halting further approval of intertidal flat conversion (land claim) at priority sites for migratory species and other biodiversity, irrespective of protection status, until a full assessment of the economics of ecological services and identification needs for migratory species and other biodiversity can be completed;

9. Urges Parties, in line with Target 4 of the Strategic Plan for Migratory Species 2015- 2023, to withdraw or modify any perverse incentives to convert intertidal or other coastal wetland habitats, and additionally, to implement sustainable coastal engineered measures for climate adaptation, coastal defense and risk reduction, in line with innovative nature-based solutions including “Building with Nature” principles, that ensure maintenance and restoration of mudflats, sand banks, barrier islands and other critical habitat such as mangroves, saltmarshes and seagrass beds;

10. Encourages Parties to develop pilot schemes to demonstrate flyway-scale Net Positive Impact of critically important areas including offsetting approaches that involve corporations and governments;

11. Urges Parties and invites non-Party Range States to ensure that coastal sediment needs from riverine inputs are maintained through the appropriate regulation of outflows from dams or other water regulation structures through the implementation of the Ramsar Convention’s guidance on environmental flows (Resolutions VIII.1 and X.19);


►    The CMS COP Resolution 12.07 (Manila 2017) on the Role of Ecological Networks in the Conservation of Migratory Species, includes:

8. Further encourages Parties and relevant organizations, when implementing systems of protected areas, and other relevant site- and area-based conservation measures, to:

 a) select areas in such a way as to address the needs of migratory species as far as possible throughout their life cycles and migratory ranges;

b) set network-scale objectives for the conservation of these species within such systems, including by restoration of fragmented and degraded habitats and removal of barriers to migration;  

10. Further invites Parties and other States as well as relevant international fora, as appropriate, to explore the applicability of ecological networks to marine migratory species, especially those that are under pressure from human activities such as over exploitation, oil and gas exploration/exploitation, fisheries and coastal development;


►    The CMS COP Resolution 12.26 (Manila 2017) on Improving Ways of Addressing Connectivity in the Conservation of Migratory Species, includes:

1. Urges Parties and invites others to give special attention to the issues highlighted in this Resolution when planning, implementing and evaluating actions designed to support the conservation and management of migratory species, both at national level and in the context of international cooperation, including in particular when:

(i) devising strategic conservation objectives, so that these may more often be expressed in terms of whole migration systems, and in terms of the requirements for the functioning of the migration process itself, as opposed to merely the status of populations or habitats;

(ii) identifying, prioritizing, developing and managing protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures, both within and beyond areas of national jurisdiction, taking account inter alia of the need for connectivity to be a key factor in the definition of appropriate conservation management units, including at the landscape or seascape scale, and the need for actions to be addressed to the connections between places as well as to the places themselves;

(iii) strengthening and expanding ecological networks to conserve migratory species worldwide and enhancing their design and functionality in accordance with Resolutions 10.3 and 11.25;

(iv) evaluating the sufficiency and coherence of ecological networks in functional and qualitative terms as well as in terms of extent and distribution, having regard to Resolution 11.25 and to the desirability of sharing experiences and best practices on this issue;

(v) monitoring and assessing the effectiveness of the protection and management of the areas and networks referred to in the present paragraph;

2. Encourages Parties and invites others, working with all relevant stakeholders in government authorities, local communities, the private and other sectors, to intensify efforts to address threats to the conservation status of migratory species which are manifested as threats to connectivity, including barriers to migration, fragmented resources and disrupted processes, genetic isolation, population non-viability, altered behaviour patterns, shifts in range caused by climate change or depletion of food or water resources, inconsistencies in management across and beyond national jurisdictions, and other factors;

3. Requests the Secretariat to facilitate the sharing of information on connectivity within and between the instruments of the CMS Family, biodiversity-related multilateral environmental agreements and others including bringing this Resolution to the attention of the process under the auspices of the Convention on Biological Diversity for identifying and describing Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Areas, the process under the auspices of the United Nations General Assembly to develop an international legally binding instrument under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction, the United Nations Environment Programme Global Connectivity Conservation Project and the IUCN WCPA Connectivity Conservation Specialist Group, and to take cognizance of serial nominations of World Heritage Sites under the World Heritage Convention within a multinational flyway context;

4. Invites Parties, other States and relevant organizations to provide support for the longterm maintenance of large-scale databases on migratory species distributions, movements and abundance such as the European Union for Bird Ringing (EURING), Movebank, the International Waterbird Census, BirdLife International’s Seabird Tracking Database, the World Database on Key Biodiversity Areas and the UNESCO-IOC Ocean Biogeographic Information System;

5. Further invites Parties, other States and relevant organizations to provide support for the enhancement of the databases referred to in the preceding paragraph in order to address in more targeted ways a range of connectivity questions of relevance to CMS implementation as well as to engage in targeted joint analyses of animal movements and other factors using these databases in an integrated way across the marine and terrestrial realms so as to improve understanding of the biological basis of migratory species connectivity; and

6. Urges Parties and invites others to foster the development of radio receiver systems that could be deployed worldwide to detect movements of small animals on land and at sea.


►   Decisions 12.91-12.93 on Improving ways of Addressing Connectivity in the Conservation of Migratory Species include

Decision 12.91 directed to Parties, Parties are invited to:

a) Review the means by which the measures for addressing connectivity in the conservation of migratory species set out in Decisions of the Conference of the Parties including UNEP/CMS/Resolutions 12.7 on The Role of Ecological Networks in the Conservation of Migratory Species, 12.26 on Improving Ways of Addressing Connectivity in the Conservation of Migratory Species and others can be applied more effectively through their national laws, policies and plans and through international cooperation;

b) Support the development of the African-Eurasian Bird Migration Atlas and the proposed CMS Global Atlas of Migratory Animal Movements, as well as the further redevelopment and application of the African-Eurasian Critical Site Network tool, as contributions to the provision of a sound scientific basis for action and as contributions also to the fostering of greater public awareness concerning connectivity issues;

c) Provide support, both financial and in kind, for the work of the Scientific Council described below.


►   Decisions 12.94-12.97 on Transfrontier Conservation Areas for Migratory Species include:

Decision 12.94 directed to Parties, Parties are invited to:

a) Identify transboundary habitats of CMS-listed species, which could be considered as transfrontier conservation areas (TFCAs), meaning an area or component of a large ecological region that straddles the boundaries of two or more countries and is within their national jurisdiction, which may encompass one or more protected areas, as well as multiple resource use areas;

b) Consider developing jointly with neighbouring Range States bi- or multilateral arrangements, including joint management plans, to improve the conservation of the habitats and species concerned;

c) Enable, in the development of such arrangements the participation of local communities and stakeholders for the purposes of benefitting wildlife and the sustainable development of the communities living within it.

Decision 12.96 directed to Parties, IGOs & NGOs:

Parties, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations are encouraged to provide financial and technical support to implement Decisions 12.94 and 12.95