WHRSN site assessment tool for the Americas

05/04/2006

WHSRN site assessment tool released

The Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network is proud to announce the launch of its “WHSRN Site Assessment Tool”, for conservation planning at each of the 64 member sites. The Tool, an Excel workbook with both English and Spanish versions, adapts and incorporates methods developed by IUCN–The World Conservation Union, BirdLife International, The Nature Conservancy and WWF.

In response to accumulating evidence of sharp declines in shorebird populations, the assessments aim to review the state of conservation at WHSRN sites, all of them crucial spots for shorebirds in the Americas. The assessments will identify the critical threats sites face and the conservation actions they need, as well as look at the management effectiveness of these protected areas. The tool can help sites with adaptive management by indicating priorities for action, information gaps and monitoring needs.

The hemispheric analysis that will follow the evaluations will be an important product for WHSRN to use in priority-setting, action-planning and advocacy for shorebird conservation in the Americas. The assessments, meant to be carried out every three years, will contribute to Important Bird Area monitoring in the Americas, in partnership with BirdLife International, and to the assessment of status of Ramsar Sites.

WHSRN invites all Site Points of Contact to take the lead at their sites to coordinate these assessments and to all partners to collaborate in this effort. It is designed to be simultaneously comprehensive and as user-friendly as possible. Please contact us (idvalencia@manomet.org; 508-224-6521) so that we and others can help you through the process. We at the WHSRN Executive Office, as well as BirdLife International Partners (National Audubon Society, Nature Canada, Bird Studies Canada) and several government agencies like the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are committed to support these assessments at individual sites. Several sites are lined up to begin their assessments shortly, and our goal is to get 20 sites on board by November 2006.

Read more about the assessments, download the tool and learn how each site can implement them at:

http://www.manomet.org/WHSRN/site_assessment.php

Best regards,

Iván Darío Valencia
Conservation Specialist and Data Manager
Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network
Manomet Center for Conservation Sciences
P.O. Box 1770 Manomet, MA 02345 USA
(508) 224-6521 Ext 227 Fax: (508) 224-9220
www.whsrn.org

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