Ramsar FAQs: trivia questions on the Convention on Wetlands

24/10/2013

Historical

Where does the name "Ramsar Convention" come from?

The Convention on Wetlands -- formally entitled "The Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Waterfowl Habitat" -- was signed at an international conference in Caspian seaside town of Ramsar, Iran, in 1971, and the treaty has been known informally by that name ever since. The name should be written Ramsar Convention, not RAMSAR.


Which nations signed the Final Act in Ramsar, 2 February 1971, recommending the Ramsar treaty to their governments?

Signatory nations: Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany (Federal Republic), India, Iran, Ireland, Jordan, Netherlands, Pakistan, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, USSR, and the UK
Intergovernmental organizations participating in the Ramsar conference, FAO and UNESCO
Participating NGOs, CIC, IBP, ICBP, IUCN, IWRB and WWF


Where was the original 1971 Ramsar conference meant to be held, before Ramsar, Iran, was substituted because of its better facilities?

  • Babolsar, Iran


Who are now considered the "Founding Fathers of the Convention"?

  • Luc Hoffmann
  • G. V. T. Matthews
  • Eric Carp
  • Eskander Firouz


Which international non-governmental organizations played an instrumental role in the evolution of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands?

  • IWRB (International Waterfowl and Wetlands Research Bureau), now Wetlands International, and
  • IUCN--International Union for the Conservation of Nature, with major support from
  • WWF, the World Wide Fund for Nature


Which five international NGOs have been officially recognized as "International Organization Partners" of the Ramsar Convention?

  • BirdLife International
  • International Water Management Institute (IWMI)
  • IUCN-The World Conservation Union
  • Wetlands International
  • WWF International


What was the first Ramsar Wetland of International Importance?

Cobourg Peninsula, Northern Territory, Australia, 220,700 ha, designated 08/05/74


Who are the "Wetland Persons of International Importance"?

Thymio Papayannis, Greece, May 2001
Eckhart Kuikjen, Belgium, 26 November 2002
Veit Koester, Denmark, December 2002
Clayton Rubec, Canada, 4 November 2008
Makoto Komoda, Japan, 15 May 2009
Herbert Raffaele, USA, 13 July 2012

The Present

Which Contracting Parties have the most Wetlands of International Importance?

  • 169 United Kingdom
  • 139 Mexico
  • 74 Spain
  • 66 Sweden
  • 65 Australia
  • 63 Norway
  • 53 The Netherlands
  • 52 Italy
  • 50 Algeria
  • 49 Finland
  • 46 Japan
  • 46 China
  • 45 Ireland
  • 43 Denmark
  • 42 France
  • 40 Tunisia


Which Contracting Parties have the most surface area (in hectares) designated for the Ramsar List?

  • 14,842,405 hectares, Bolivia
  • 13,066,675 hectares, Canada
  • 12,405,068 hectares, Chad
  • 11,335,259 hectares, Congo
  • 10,323,767 hectares, Russian Federation
  • 8,833,094 hectares, Mexico
  • 8,189,600 hectares, Sudan
  • 8,117,145 hectares, Australia
  • 7,435,624 hectares, D. R. of Congo
  • 7,225,687 hectares, Brazil
  • 6,784,042 hectares, Peru
  • 6,422,361 hectares, Guinea


What are the largest Wetlands of International Importance?

Ramsar Sitesurface area in hectaresdesignated
Ngiri-Tumba-Maindombe, Democratic Republic of Congo
6,569,624 ha
24/07/08
Queen Maud Gulf, Northwest Territories, Canada
6,278,200 ha
24/05/82
Grands affluents, Congo
5,908,074 ha
13/12/07
Sudd, Sudan
5,700,000 ha
06/06/06
Okavango Delta System, Botswana
5,537,400 ha
09/12/96
Plaines d'inondation des Bahr Aouk et Salamat, Chad
4,922,000 ha
01/05/06
Delta Intérieure du Niger, Mali
4,119,500 ha
01/02/04
Malagarasi-Muyovozi Wetlands, Tanzania
3,250,000 ha
13/04/00
Pantanal Boliviano, Bolivia
3,189,888 ha
17/09/01


What are the smallest Wetlands of International Importance?

Ramsar Site
surface area in hectaresdesignated
Ganghwa Maehwamarum Habitat, Rep. Korea
1 ha (0.30)
13/10/08
Mare Aux Cochons High Altitude Freshwater Wetlands, Seychelles
1 ha (0.315)
02/02/10
Ile Alcatraz, Kamsar/Boke, Guinea

1 ha (1.0)

18/11/92

Somerset Long Bay Pond, Bermuda, UK
1 ha (1.1)
11/05/99
Gulf of Tubli, Bahrain

2 ha

27/10/97

Hungry Bay Mangrove Swamp, Bermuda, UK
2 ha
11/05/99
Lover's Lake, Bermuda, UK
2 ha
11/05/99
Warwick Pond, Bermuda, UK
2 ha
11/05/99
Odaesan National Park Wetlands, Rep. Korea
2 ha
13/10/08
Is-Simar, Malta
5 ha

29/01/96

Tourbière du Lac Noir, Algeria

5 ha

04/06/03

Parc de Tsarasaotra, Madagascar
5 ha
09/05/05
Note: Ramsar site areas are rounded up or down to the nearest hectare.

 
What is the southernmost Ramsar site?

Argentina, Glaciar Vinciguerra y turberas asociadas (16/09/09): 54º45’S 068º20’W


When and where have the Ramsar Convention's meetings of the Conference of the Contracting Parties been held?

 

The Conference of the Parties numbers are used to designate the Convention's Resolutions and Recommendations; e.g., Recommendation 5.1 and Resolution VI.17 both deal with problems at Ramsar sites in specific Contracting Parties, adopted at Kushiro and Brisbane respectively.

Is there a recommended wording to the signs marking Wetlands of International Importance?

The 19th Meeting of the Standing Committee recommended the following wording for "signage" at Ramsar sites:

Decision SC19.18: The Contracting Parties should endeavor to place descriptive signs at all Ramsar sites, and these signs should include the Ramsar logo, as well as the following suggested text as amended to meet particular circumstances:

    THIS SITE, COVERING xxx HECTARES, HAS BEEN DESIGNATED BY THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT FOR INCLUSION IN THE LIST OF WETLANDS OF INTERNATIONAL IMPORTANCE ESTABLISHED UNDER THE CONVENTION ON WETLANDS, THE INTERNATIONAL TREATY SIGNED IN RAMSAR (IRAN) IN 1971 TO PROMOTE THE CONSERVATION AND SUSTAINABLE USE OF WETLAND AREAS WORLDWIDE.

    The protection and management of this site is under the responsibility of: [name and address, including telephone and fax numbers, of the appropriate agency].

Variation for countries with a federal system:

    ON THE PROPOSAL OF [NAME OF THE STATE/PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT], THIS SITE, COVERING xxx HECTARES, HAS BEEN DESIGNATED BY THE NATIONAL GOVERNMENT .... [continues as above]

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The Convention today

Number of » Contracting Parties: 168 Sites designated for the
» List of Wetlands of
International Importance
2,186 Total surface area of designated sites (hectares): 208,674,247

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