World Wetlands Day 2004 - activities planned and reported for 2004

What is World Wetlands Day?2 February each year is World Wetlands Day. It marks the date of the signing of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. WWD was celebrated for the first time in 1997 and made an encouraging beginning. Each year, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, and groups of citizens at all levels of the community have taken advantage of the opportunity to undertake actions aimed at raising public awareness of wetland values and benefits in general and the Ramsar Convention in particular. From 1997 to 2003, the Convention’s Web site has posted reports from more than 80 countries of WWD activities of all sizes and shapes, from lectures and seminars, nature walks, children’s art contests, sampan races, and community clean-up days, to radio and television interviews and letters to newspapers, to the launch of new wetland policies, new Ramsar sites, and new programmes at the national level.

From the Mountains to the Sea
Wetlands at Work for Us

Activities reported for World Wetlands Day 2004

Please inform the Ramsar Bureau,, of WWD activities you are planning for 2 February 2004 or thereabouts, and report on them afterwards, including any helpful materials you might like to give us the opportunity of posting here. Your reports, press releases, photographs, etc., in electronic format will be welcome and, while we cannot promise to include everything, we will do our best.

Note on grammar: don't worry about it. These entries have been compiled from pre-WWD plans and post-WWD reports, and so the verb tenses are all scrambled together.

International: Mediterranean. Sylvie Goyet(, Regional Coordinator, MedWetCoast Project, writes in the February edition of the MedWetCoast @-News newsletter: "At the same time, we celebrated World Wetlands Day, marking the date of the signing of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971. . . . Just to underscore a few of these actions around the Mediterranean this year: on 1st February, Tour du Valat opened its doors (once a year only!) to eager visitors, all fully equipped with binoculars and gum boots; the Moroccan SPANA NGO scheduled a series of events (bird watching trips, exhibits, conferences, etc) next to wetland sites and produced an Arabic version of the Ramsar poster. Nice! - I also hear that a Turkish version has been prepared (?); the MedWet office held a successful information / celebration event at Villa Kazouli in Athens; and in Greece, a community clean up and an educational visit to the major lagoons of the Kotychi and Prokopos site were organized. Hopefully more bird and nature lovers were gained on that day … who may become decision makers one day! Happy reading, Sylvie."

International: Mekong River Basin.Alvin Lopez (, Wetland Ecologist with IUCN's Mekong Wetlands Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Use Programme based in Phnom Penh, writes that WWD2004 activities are being prepared for the four countries covered by the programme, Cambodia, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam. Later, he adds that: "The mighty Mekong flows from the mountains to the sea through 6 Countries - China, Myanmar, Lao, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam. For WWD 2004, IUCN - The World Conservation Union in cooperation with the governments of the 4 nations in the Lower Mekong Basin will be organising various educational and awareness activities at the national and at wetland sites within the Mekong Basin. These activities also mark the inception of the 5 year GEF-UNDP Mekong Wetlands Biodiversity Conservation Programme." More detail here.

International: Prespa Transboundary Park. Aferdita Ponari (, Communication Officers for the Prespa Park, writes: "We are going to organize some activities regarding the WWD in the three countries of the Transboundary Prespa Park (in Albania, Greece and the FYR of Macedonia). I will send the report after we will perform the planned activities, e.g. schoolchildren coloring competitions in the three countries around the Prespa Lakes, seminars, excursions, bird watching, etc. Having in mind the very special contribution that the Ramsar Bureau has to the establishment of the first transboundary protected area in Balkan, we would like this 4th Anniversary of the Prespa Park to be very special." Here is a report.

International: Northeast Asia.Zhang Xiaohong ( of Wetlands International - China in Beijing writes that South Korea, Japan, and China will be co-organizing an event to celebrate World Wetlands Week in Busan City. "Following the successful Asian Wetlands Week 2003 hosted by Ramsar Centre Japan in Norishino City, based on the agreement among Ramsar Centre Japan, Busan National University and Wetlands International-China, Asian Wetlands Week for 2004 will be organized by Busan University on 16-18 January 2004 in Busan, South Korea, with the mayor of Busan City officiating. The event aims to increase childrens' awareness of wetlands biodiversity conservation, and the topic focuses on Wetlands and Children. Students, teachers from Hunan, Jiangsu and Beijing and the nature reserve managers from Dafeng and Dongting Lake--two Ramsar Sites of China--will attend the event, and a group of people including students, volunteers and researchers from Japan will come and join in. The main activities include the presentations by students and teachers from Japan, South Korea and China and each country’s organizers. A site visit to Woopo Wetlands- Ramsar Site and birdwatching will be made during the event."

International: IUCN - The World Conservation Union. "This year, IUCN demonstrates its commitment to the Convention and the sustainable use and management of wetlands by participating in WWD activities worldwide." IUCN press release here.

International: Wetlands International. "2 February: World Wetlands Day! This day marks the anniversary of the signing of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. Click here for activities organised by Wetlands International offices worldwide to celebrate this event."

International: Convention on Migratory Species. The CMS has posted a news story on WWD which emphasizes the importance of wetlands for the signatories to the CMS and outlines CMS and AEWA cooperation with the Ramsar Convention, including the tripartite Joint Work Plan that is scheduled for signing in April 2004. The story can be seen here or on the CMS Web site.

Albania I. The MedWetCoast project Albania celebrates the 2nd of February! "In the frame of the wetland day the MWC project organized some public awareness activities in Vlora and in Tirana. . . . In cooperation with CSDC (Civil Society Development Center) in Vlora, from 31 January - 1 February 2004, MWC organized some meetings with community groups, fisherman, in Narta and Zverrneci areas, which focused their discussion in the theme of 2nd February 2004: "From mountains to the sea: wetlands work for us". . . . In Orikumi, in cooperation with the NGO "Laguna e Kalter", were organized meetings with pupils and teachers of the Orikumi high school. . . . These activities were followed with a local workshop in Vlora." The report, reprinted from the MedWetCoast Web site, is reprinted here.

Albania II. See International: Prespa Transboundary Park.

Algeria I.Mounir BENCHARIF, Coordinateur AREA-ED (, El Mouradia, Alger, writes: "Comme l'année passée l'AREA-ED va organiser en 2004 un programme d'éducation relative à l'environnement et au développement durable. Le thème de cette année sera la désertification. Ce programme est mis en oeuvre par notre réseau associatif qui compte 25 associations réparties sur toute l'Algérie. Bien evidemment comme pour le programme précedent consacré à l'eau, les Zones humides figureront en bonne place cette année également. Une séance sera consacrée aux zones humides des régions arides, semi arides et sahariennes, à leur rôle dans les équilibes écologiques de ces régions et à la synergie entre les conventions de Ramsar et de la CCD. Des activités spéciales seront faites par les enfants à l'occasion du 2 février."

Algeria II. A l'occasion de la Journée mondiale des zones humides célébrée le 2 février de chaque année, la direction des forêts de la wilaya de Tizi Ouzou organise cette semaine des portes ouvertes sur la préservation de l'écosystème. El Watan, le 25 février 2004.

Algeria III. Mlle Narimane Derghal ( écrit: "Dans le cadre de la célébration de la journée mondiale des zones humides qui coïncide avec le 2 février de chaque année le centre cynégétique de Réghaïa (structure chargée de la gestion de la zone humide du lac de Réghaïa classée site Ramsar d'importance internationale en juin 2003) en collaboration avec la direction générale des forêts organise une manifestation autour du thème : fonctions et valeurs des zones humides." Rapport ici.

Anguilla. Mr. Karim V.D. Hodge (, Environmental Officer in the Chief Minister's Office, writes that the Convention's WWD materials will be used in the government's wetland conservation education programmes during February to coincide with World Wetlands Day.

Antigua and Barbuda. Melesha Banhan (, Environmental Manager, Sandals Antigua Resort and Spa, Dickenson Bay, St. John's Antigua, writes: "For World Wetland Day I will be doing a field trip with my environmental group to one of the wetland areas situated in Antigua, West Indies. . . . Any other information that you can provide me with will be greatly appreciated as we offer continuous training sessions to both our staff and the community on environmental issues and this information can prove very useful."

Argentina I. Jorge Cappato, Coordinador nacional, and his colleagues at Proteger ( based in Sante Fe, writes: "Dear Dwight, We would like to share with you our WWD -- it's already available in Spanish in our web http:\\ Here goes a summary both in English and Spanish. "Fundación PROTEGER - Amigos de la Tierra, Argentina, is preparing the launching of World Wetlands Day 2004, from the city of Bariloche and the mountainous surroundings of the National Park Nahuel Huapi, representing one of most important centres of tourism in Patagonia. It´s precisely from this southern Argentinian city, having a record of national and international visitors, that PROTEGER wish to bring attention to the importance of mountain wetlands to Argentina and the rest of the world. The NGO has been working with Ramsar since 1999 for the diffusion of World Wetlands Day. The region has Ramsar sites of unique landscape, biological and cultural value: Laguna Blanca (Neuquén), Llancanelo (Mendoza), Guanacache (Mendoza y San Juan) and the Reserva Costa Atlántica (Tierra del Fuego). The outstanding variety of aquatic birds is one of the main attractions in this area."

La Fundación PROTEGER - Amigos de la Tierra, Argentina, prevé lanzar el Día Mundial de los Humedales 2004, desde la ciudad de Bariloche y el entorno montañoso del Parque Nacional Nahuel Huapi. Este es uno de los centros más importantes de recepción turística de la Patagonia. Precisamente desde esta ciudad del sur argentino que tiene un récord de visitantes nacionales e internacionales, PROTEGER se propone llamar la atención sobre la importancia de los humedales de montaña para la Argentina y el mundo. La ONG viene trabajando con Ramsar desde 1999 en la difusión del Día Mundial de los Humedales (DMH). La región cuenta con sitios Ramsar de singular valor paisajístico, biológico y cultural: Laguna Blanca (Neuquén), Llancanelo (Mendoza), Guanacache (Mendoza y San Juan) y Reserva Costa Atlántica (Tierra del Fuego). La impresionante variedad de aves acuáticas es uno de los principales atractivos de la zona.

In addition, Jorge Cappato has sent a photograph of "Members of the Club Andino Bariloche (CAB) and PROTEGER at the top of the López hill (2076m above sea level) and Nahuel Huapi Lake as framework, spreading Ramsar flag in celebration of World Wetlands Day." Here it is.

In addition, a PDF file with a new Spanish Brochure on Wetlands and World Wetlands Day 2004 is available on: For copies mail to: Leticia Isaurralde - PROTEGER ( On Humedales Chaco, see also:

Argentina II. Lic. Alejandra Cornejo ( of CeDePesca (Centro en Defensa de la Pesca Nacional) está escribiendo: "Ante todo permítame presentarme: me llamo Alejandra Cornejo y trabajo en humedales costeros de la provincia de Buenos Aires, con énfasis en pesca. Actualmente estamos articulando una serie de charlas educativas en escuelas rurales del área de la Bahía Samborombón (sitio Ramsar y Area Protegida Provincial). Le escribo para comentarle todo esto, ya que tenemos interés en difundir la problemática de los humedales en la comunidad escolar, y me interesa contar con material: El DMH coincide con las vacaciones escolares, por lo cual obligadamente o lo trabajamos antes o despues (las vacaciones son de diciembre a marzo). Pero como también estamos proyectando actividades en la zona de Bahía Blanca, Bahía Verde y Bahía Falsa, Punta Lara (todas Reservas Naturales Provinciales) con los pescadores artesanales y deportivos, el material mencionado anteriormente también será de utilidad para las charlas educativas ambientales."

Argentina III. Lic. Paola Germain (, Presidenta de TELLUS, Asociación Conservacionista del Sur in Buenos Aires, está escribiendo: "Las actividades todavía están en etapa de planeamiento, pero lo que pensamos hacer es una muestra en una sala pública de nuestra ciudad, a la que asiste el público en general. Vamos exponer posters (algunos que tenemos más los que ustedes manden), diapositivas, algún video. En la zona cercana a Bahía Blanca hay reservas naturales que incluyen humedales, entre ellas la Reserva Natural de Usos Múltiples Bahía Blanca, Bahía Falsa y Bahía Verde, en la cual se está trabajando para que pueda ser nombrada sitio Ramsar. Tenemos material sobre estos lugares que vamos a incluir en la muestra. Además, la institución tiene contacto con varios establecimientos escolares de distintos niveles, en los cuales hemos ofrecido charlas sobre diferentes temas relacionados con la conservación de la naturaleza, y queremos preparar una charla sobre humedales para ofrecerla. Seguramente esta actividad se realice con posterioridad al día mundial, ya que en febrero las escuelas están de vacaciones. Por el momento estamos trabajando en esto, pero puede ser que se agruegue alguna otra actividad que se nos ocurra."

Argentina IV.Alejandro Felipe Oliver ( está escribiendo: "Amigos de la Tierra junto a Ecologistas del Río de la Plata planean celebrar el día de los humedales promoviendo la protección jurídica y ambiental de la ribera interior del estuario platense (costa bonaerense, Río de la Plata) especialmente en municipios del área metropolitana norte del Gran Buenos Aires -Vicente López y San Isidro- en dónde desde hace más de 30 años y por la alta urbanización de la zona entre otras causas, se viene destruyendo el ecosistema ribereño mediante rellenamiento con basura y restos de demolición y de la construcción." Nota de prensa.

Argentina V.Osvaldo Montenegro ( forwards a poster from Lic. Christian a. Alcalá, Director de Ambiente y Desarrollo Sustentable, Municipalidad de Malargüe, Mendoza, on the 1º Jornadas de Conmemoración del "Día Internacional de Los Humedales" a realizarse en la Ciudad de Malargüe el Dia 2 de Febrero.

Argentina VI. The Government of Argentina has marked WWD 2004 by designating an extremely large floodplain complex along the Paraná and Paraguay Rivers in the Chaco region.

Argentina VII.Alejandro Giraudo (, Secretario del CIM, INALI-CONICET, está escribiendo: "Los felicitamos por el pasado Día del Humedal, que festejamos en Jaaukanigás (Santa Fe, Argentina), con entusiasmo por un año 2003 en donde nos unieron muchas actividades, que seguramente se prolongarán en el 2004, para que podamos entre todos llevar adelante los objetivos de la Convención. En el día de ayer realizamos varias notas de difusión en radios del sitio y localidades cercanas (con la ayuda de INCUPO como siempre), se publicó una nota en el Diario el Litoral de Santa Fe (que les adjunto aquí), conmemorando el día a través de Jaaukanigás. Les deseamos lo mejor desde el Comite Intersectorial de Manejo de Jaaukanigás."

Argentina VIII.Comunicado de Prensa, Asociación Proteger - Prensa (,

Argentina IX.Viviana Pusterla (, Dto. de Educación y Conservación, Fundación Temaiken, Buenos Aires, está escribiendo: "Durante el mes de febrero hemos comenzado con una acción de difusión para la conservación de los humedales que consistió en la exposición de posters alusivo al dia de los humedales, enfatizando en los argentinos y entregando folletos en nuestro parque. Al mencionar "comenzamos" es porque se trata de una pimera parte de la acción que se seguirá realizando durante el transcurso de este año y que consitirá en la entrega de los posters y folletos a todos los colegios que nos visitan. Por otro lado se trabajará visitando las escuelas (recie´n comienza nuestro año lectivo) de nuestra zona (estamos en una región de influencia del Delta Paranaense) realizando charlas y entregando manuales informativos para que el docente trabaje con sus alumnos. Cerrando la acción, estamos terminando de confeccionar un material didactico- informativo sobre humedales en general y los de Argentina, que lo incorporaremos a nuestra web. Adjunto un link en el que se puede ver el folleto y el poster, para que, si es posible, sea publicado en la pagina Ramsar"

Argentina X. La Asociación Alihuen nos ha enviado un comunicado de prensa sobre los Bañados del Río Atuel.

Australia I. Alison Beard (, Inland Waters Section, Dept. of the Environment and Heritage, writes: "The Australian theme for World Wetlands Day 2004 is "Water for Wetlands - Water for Life". Many activities have been planned across Australia to celebrate World Wetlands Day. These activities include seminars, guided walks, learning about the fauna and flora of wetlands, festivals, bird watching, displays and wetland rehabilitation activities. For further information on activities and communication products, visit The website will be updated as new activities are registered."

Australia II.Jeanie Heaslop (, Coastal Management Officer, Fitzroy Basin Association (, writes: "I am coordinating a series of WWD 2004 activities in Central Queensland, Australia. The possible suggestions for activities (working with local "Landcare" groups in several locations) include guided walks in Corio Bay (Ramsar site) and Port Curtis . . . with both school groups and community as well as school presentations on the importance of wetland management and protection and an introduction to the "Waterwatch" program (Australian Government project)."

Australia III. John Caven (, Conservation Officer with Field and Game Australia in Whittlesea, Victoria, writes: "This time of year in Victoria, Australia, summer is well underway, our native bird breeding cycle is coming to an end and as conservationists/hunters we are preparing to undertake maintenance on the nest boxes. Members of the Metropolitan Branch of Field and Game Australia will commemorate this occasion this year on 31 January 2004 by visiting wetlands, cleaning out nest boxes, replenishing straw, all of which is aimed at improving the efficiency whilst educating the general community and informing all levels of government." Here is the media release of 7 January 2004 and here is the brief report afterwards, with photos.

Australia IV. Ann Aldersey (, Regional Planner, South East Region, Department for Environment and Heritage in Mount Gambier, South Australia, writes: "We are hoping to hold an open day at a Ramsar wetland that we are in the process of developing a management plan for. It is planned that this will assist our community consultation phase." Ranger Rebecca Crack ( reports that WWD "at Bool Lagoon Game Reserve and Hacks Lagoon Conservation Park in the South East of Australia was a success. The local rangers planned guided tours and information talks from experts in water management, flora, fauna, threatened species and water watch. Activities were organised from 2pm to 4pm with a total of 60 people joining in. A great display was erected with many handouts, stickers, posters, display of local animals, hands on activities and free refreshments. The weather was great and it was proposed to organise activities again for next year when water levels are higher. A big thanks to those from Mt Gambier who helped on the day." Here are photos.

Australia V. Emily Boucher (, Stormwater Officer, Shire of Campaspe in Victoria, writes: "Attached is our media release for World Wetlands Day Activities at Kyabram Fauna Park. For more information on the Fauna Park see We will send a report after the day, including photos. Thanks very much for your support." Here is the brief report afterwards.

Australia VI.Brenda ( of Greening Australia writes: "I'm just letting you know about an activity we're organising for World Wetlands Day. The Borrell-a-kandelop (meaning resting place for waterbirds in local language) project is running a free bird identification day on the Western District Ramsar Lakes site. We will have the assistance of local expert naturalists who will help us to identify migratory and non-migratory birds."

Australia VII.Cath Harris (, Scientific Officer - Environmental Governance, Gippsland Water, Traralgon, writes: "Just a quick note to let you know about the activities planned for WWD in the Gippsland Region. A number of local agencies have joined together to run activities for WWD 2004. They include Gippsland Water, West Gippsland Catchment Management Authority, West Gippsland Waterwatch, EPA and City of Latrobe. Activities will be held at the Traralgon Railway Reservoir in Victoria on the 2nd of February 2004. Students from a local primary school will come along and participate in Waterwatch and stormwater education activities and also become wetland detectives for the day on their discover the wetlands walk."

Australia VIII. Caroline Camilleri (, Ecological Risk Assessment, eriss, writes: "I would like to let you know of a significant activity taking place in Darwin. CONFERENCE ANNOUNCEMENT -- Sustainable Futures for Australia's Tropical Rivers: The role of science in managing tropical rivers, wetlands, estuaries and coastal ecosystems. Venue: Charles Darwin University, Northern Territory, 1-3 February 2004. We will be acknowledging WWD and using the promotional material to send a positive message to participants about the significance of our wetlands."

Australia IX.Kylie Yeend, Project Officer (, Hunter Ramsar Communication Strategy, The Wetlands Centre in Shortland (, writes: "I'm working on the implementation of the Hunter Ramsar Communication Strategy, at The Wetlands Centre (TWC), Australia (Shortland Wetlands). Attached is a copy of the media release for WWD'04 plus TWC's report on the day with a couple of photos. Thanks!"

Australia X. Karl Dickson ( writes that "the 'Borrell-a-Kandelop' team put on another WWD activity which was enthusiastically attended by the local and regional community. . . . The Western District Lakes Ramsar Site has been project managed by Greening Australia (Victoria) since spring of 2001. 'Borrell-a-Kandelop' is a regional aboriginal phrase meaning "resting place for water birds". Here is his report with photos.

Austria I.Anita Matzinger ( of the Amt der Oö. Landesregierung in Linz, in cooperation with the national government, indicates that Austria is designating its newest Ramsar site, National Park Kalkalpen in Upper Austria, to be effective as of 2 February 2004. Werner Druml, Director of the Department for Environment, Energy and Transport in the Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs, adds that in fact Austria will be designated five new Ramsar Sites in all on WWD. Descriptions of all five can be found here.Photos.

Austria II.Gerhard Sigmund ( informs about more Austrian activities around WWD: "The Minister for Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Mr. Josef Pröll, together with the board of directors of the Austrian League for Nature Conservation (Naturschutzbund Österreich) and from "Verbund", Austria's biggest electricity power producer and supplier, will give a press conference on Friday, 30th January 2004. The "Life Minister" presents the new five Ramsar sites - all of them in the mountains! - whose nomination for Ramsar was strongly promoted by Gerald Plattner from the "Austrian Federal Forests". The Minister also will present a new Brochure "Ramsar in Austria" containing information on the general Ramsar commitments as well as on all the 16 Austrian Ramsar sites. Birgit-Mair-Markart from Naturschutzbund, the Austrian CEPA-Focal Point and Hans Haider from Verbund will present the establishment of a new "WasSerleben Small Grants Fund 2004" supporting conservation projects for Austria´s "WasSerlebensräume" (aquatic habitats). The fund will be managed by "Naturschutzbund". Two more Ramsar sites are in preparation." Photos.

Bangladesh. Quamrul Islam Chowdhury, Chairman, Forum of Environmental Journalists of Bangladesh (FEJB) (, writes: "Marking the World Wetlands Day 2004, the Forum of Environmental Journalists of Bangladesh (FEJB) in collaboration of the World Water Forum of Journalists (WWFJ) with support from Ministry of Environment and Forest (MoEF) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) under SEMP is organising a Seminar titled 'From the Mountains to the Sea: Wetlands at Work for Us' at 10.00 am on January 30, 2003 at FEJB Conference Room at 42/1/Kha, Segun Bagicha, Dhaka. Environment and Forest Minister Shajahan Siraj MP, Water Resource Minister Hafizuddin Ahmed MP and State Minister of Environment and Forest Jafrul Islam Chowdhury will be guests of honour."

Belgium I.George Yves ( pour le C.R.I.E. d'Harchies: "Situé dans la zone ramsar des marais d'Harchies, le Centre Régional d'Initiation à l'Environnement organise une visite guidée du site dans le cadre de la journée mondiale des zones humides (dimanche 01/02/04).Nous nous permettons de prendre contact avec vous pour avoir plus d'informations à ce sujet ainsi que de vous demander si vous pouviez nous procurer du matériel didactique (poster, vidéo,...)."

Belgium II. Catherine Debruyne (, Direction de la Nature, Direction générale des Ressources naturelles et de l'Environnement, Namur, écrit: "Veuillez trouver ci-joint, pour information, le compte-rendu des activités organisées en Région wallonne à l'occasion de la journée mondiale des zones humides 2004".

Belize. Dirk Francisco (, Public Participation Officer, Belize Audubon Society (, writes: "Under an agreement with the Government of Belize, we manage 8 protected areas, covering an area of over 162,000 acres. These include the world's first Jaguar reserve, a Ramsar listed wetland site, and the world renowned dive destination - the Great Blue Hole. We work closely with the communities that surround the protected areas - recognising that their cooperation and input is essential to our work. BAS is the oldest conservation NGO in Belize, and over most of the 21 years since Belize's independence from Great Britain has been charged with managing eight of Belize's most biologically and topographically diverse protected areas. Through our education program, every year we celebrated World Wetlands Day, with most of the activities being centered in Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary (Ramsar Site). Most of the activities are geared towards the school children from the communities."

Benin.Josea S. Dossou-Bodjrenou, Musee des Sciences Naturelles, Nature Tropicale ONG ( in Cotonou, écrit: "Dans le cadre de la célébration de la journée mondiale des zones humides le 2 février 2004, le Musée Nature Tropicale ONG en collaboration avec le Forum Biodiversité se proposent d'organiser certaines manifestations pour marquer l'événement. Il s'agit d'une journée "Portes ouvertes" grand public au Musée avec entrée libre, visite guidée gratuite couplé avec le lancement de "l'Opération la Graine Future" dans les zones humides du Sud-Bénin. "L'Opération Graine Future" consiste à former des jeunes leaders pour la conservation de la nature en leur donnant une éducation basée sur les connaissances endogènes des communautés locales dans la conservation et l'utilisation rationnelle des ressources biologiques dans les zones humides et aux alentours des aires protégées (forêts et plans d'eau sacrés …). Les points forts de cette journée porteront sur les "Portes ouvertes" du Musée au grand public avec projection publique de documentaires de la Convention de Ramsar sur les zones humides et la visite de certains circuits écotouristiques dans les zones humides du Sud-Bénin par des responsables d'ONGs locales intervenant dans la mise en œuvre de la stratégie de conservation de la bioviversité".

Brazil. The Diretoria de Áreas Protegidas, Secretaria de Biodiversidade e Florestas in the Ministerio do Meio Ambiente, has produced a brief Flash animated show for WWD, which will need the free Macromedia Flash plug-in on your browser for viewing. "Clique aqui para visualizar a animação que preparamos para o Dia Mundial das Zonas Úmidas."

Bulgaria I. Valentina Fidanova of the environmental NGO Green Balkans (, in Plovdiv writes: "Dear Ms. Valerie Higgins and all at the Bureau, We welcome the Bureau's initiative to involve local NGOs, working for wetlands, in the campaign celebrating the World Wetland Day, by providing information materials in a form that could be published in local languages as well. Congratulations for the wonderful choice of a motto for the campaign!" A bit more here.Here is her illustrated report of all of the Green Balkans activities for WWD.

Bulgaria II. Mrs. S. Kalacheva, RIOSV-Burgas (, writes: "Thank you very much for the WWD 2004 materials. We got them right on time - 22.02.04. We`re having some information from the brochure translated (I hope this is not illegal ) in order to make it more popular and will expose a copy of this information in the both visitors` centers. It`s really interesting and the poster is beautiful. We`ll send You some pictures of our centres later."

Bulgaria III.Boris Barov (, Executive Director, Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds/BirdLife Bulgaria (, sends this note on behalf of the event coordinators, Ms. Radostina Tzenova: "This year the World celebrates the World Wetlands Day (2 February) under the motto "From the mountains to the sea -- Wetlands at work for us". That is why the Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds (BirdLife International's Partner organization in Bulgaria) also will celebrate the Day from the Vitosha Mountain to the Black Sea Coast. Every Regional office of BSPB will organize something interesting for the celebration for the local public." Here is a description of the upcoming events.

Bulgaria IV.Milena Dimitrova, Centre for Environmental Information & Education (, writes: "I would like to inform you that for the celebration of the WWD we produced 1000 copies from the sticker. Together with "Green Balkans" from Plovdiv in the framework of our cooperation with Danube Environmental Forum we organised this. Mrs. Valentina Fidanova from "Green Balkans" will send you several copies from the Bulgarian version of the sticker. On 2.02. we started the distribution of the sticker together with other information materials and publications in the Bluelink Information Network. An article is under preparation for the environmental bulletin "Ecopolis" here in Sofia. The information materials you sent to us will be used also during the planned trainings for NGOs and school pupils later this year."

Cambodia I. See International: Mekong River Basin, above.

Cambodia II.Prom Nga (, Project Co-Manager, GEF/UNDP Mekong Wetlands Biodiversity Programme, Stoeng Treng Demonstration Project, IUCN, has provided an entertaining report on the 2-3 February WWD celebrations at the Stoeng Treng Ramsar Site, organized by the Provincial Department of Environment with support from MWBP, IUCN, Wetlands International, CEPA, PLG, and OCAA, with a great range of participation from primary school theater groups to high level political representatives. Here it is.

Cameroon I.Hilaire Tchoffo of the Alliance des Enfants pour la Protection de l'Environnement ( writes that "Nous souhaiterions entreprendre un serie de manifestation sur la Journée mondiale des zones humides 2004 avec les enfants que nous encadrons dans la province de l'ouest."

Cameroon II. Dr. Dieudonné Marius Mbog ( in Yaoundé writes : "Nous organisons un atelier de formation sur la gestion durable des zones humides au Cameroun. Nous souhaiterions recevoir beaucoup de matériel pour distribuer aux ONG membres du réseau de conservation des zones humides d'Afrique Centrale. Nous comptons 210 ONGs."

Cameroon III.Chi Napoleon Forpah ( writes: "Marking celebrations of WWD, the Watershed Task Group (WTG) represented by Chi Napoleon Forpah and the Center of Biodiversity Conservation (CBC), represented by Tebeng Dilys Keng, all NGOs found in the North West Province of Cameroon, will in collaboration with the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MINEF) north West Province, be holding a talk show over the Cameroon Radio Television (CRTV) for 30mins. Highlights will be on the wise use of wetlands in Cameroon, functions and values of wetlands, the challenges faced and the progess Cameroon has made towards the ratification of the Ramsar Covention. There will be a field visit to strategic wetlands sites at the center of Bamenda town and in the Ndop plains." More here on Cameroon's wetlands.

Canada I. Rick Wishart (, Director of Education for Ducks Unlimited Canada, writes: "We are promoting World Wetlands Day this year in Canada’s premium national youth publication—“The Magazine-Not For Adults” (see their website at ). Part of this will be a contest and we’d like to offer the first 100 people who respond with the correct answer a WWD poster, sticker and info leaflet (we’ll also provide other prizes like hats, t-shirts, etc.)."

Canada II.Lorraine Pond, Interpretation Specialist, Animal Connections, at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre ( in Vancouver, B.C., writes: "The Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre will launch its 3rd annual 'Wetland Weekend' on January 31 & February 1, 2004. Last year over 3000 visitors participated in the two-day festival. The weekend's events run in honour of World Wetlands Day, and feature salmon stream and hatchery tours, activity stations in our wetlands-based Ribbitting Gallery, animal features in the Graham Amazon Gallery and a variety of family shows based on wetland conservation that include tips on what 'you' can do to help the future of the world's wetlands."

Canada III. Cathy Olliffe ( of the citizens' group Environment Haliburton ( north of Toronto, Ontario, writes: "We plan to celebrate World Wetland Day for the first time this year (our group is only one year old!) with education sessions at the local public schools as well as our local governments. Wetlands protection has always been very important to us -- last year we published bookmarks on the subject and we are also involved in a battle to save a Provincially Significant Wetland from being sold off by developers."

Canada IV.Kelly DiDomenico ( at the Trafalgar School for Girls in Montreal writes: "We are a school in Montreal, Canada, and would like to promote World Wetlands Day in our library. We would be grateful if you could send us some materials to help us out."

Canada V. Tasha Murray, River Works Coordinator ( at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre ( in Vancouver, B.C., writes: "River Works, a Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre aquatic stewardship initiative, is hosting a Celebrate Wetlands! activity on February 1 at Burns Bog, one of British Columbia's most famous wetlands. Volunteers from the Vancouver Aquarium and other community groups will participate in a scavenger hunt to learn more about local wetlands, and contribute to the restoration of the bog through a debris cleanup."

Canada VI. Trisha Holland (,Wetlands Stewardship Officer, Fish & Wildlife Branch, Dept. of Natural Resources, writes: "The Wetlands and Coastal Habitat Program of the New Brunswick Department of Natural Resources celebrated World Wetlands Day in Fredericton on February 2nd. We had a display in our front lobby featuring New Brunswick's three Wetlands of International Importance as well as posters depicting the important functions of wetlands and information on our provincial Wetlands Conservation Policy (see attached photo). Various brochures were available to the public, but the hot items were the WWD 2004 stickers and 'Wetland It's Vital' magnets. A press release was also issued and can be viewed on the NB government website ("

Canada VII.Ellen Zimmerman (, East Kootenay Environmental Society, Golden, British Columbia, writes that "This years' theme, "From the Mountains to the Sea, Wetlands at Work for Us", provides an especially fitting occasion to announce that the Columbia Wetlands will soon be nominated to be Canada's newest addition to the Ramsar list." Here is the Society's press release for WWD.

Canada VIII.Debora Soutar, Coordinator, Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve Society (, Chilliwack, BC, writes: "Thank you so much for sending beautiful posters, stickers and informative brochures to help us celebrate WWD on February 2. The materials arrived in plenty of time for our River Cleanup on January 26 and enhanced the enjoyment and appreciation of the visitors to the Great Blue Heron Nature Reserve. Some of the visitors are school teachers and they were thrilled to receive useful and attractive materials. Although we have only been established since May 2002, we look forward to participating on a grander scale in future years."

Canada IX. Dr Paresh Pandya ( writes that a number of organizations participated in World Wetlands Week activities, 1-7 February, in and around Windsor, Ontario, with celebrations in elementary and high schools, coverage in the radio and print media and libraries, and distribution of educational materials.

Chile I. Juan C. Torres-Mura (, Museo Nacional de Historia Natural in Santiago (, writes: "The National Museum of Natural History is the governmental organization for CEPA and is preparing activities for general public and also with students and teachers for the next World Wetlands Day. We would greatly appreciate if you could send us the following items: . . . ".

Chile II. Humedales CAACH ( - Reporte de Actividades a realizar, IV Región de Coquimbo, Chile: "1) Firma de acuerdo de cooperación internacional para manejo sostenible de humedales en América Latina: Corporación Ambientes Acuáticos de Chile (CAACH), Centro Neotropical de Entrenamiento en Humedales (CNEH), y Fundación Proteger - Amigos de la Tierra, Argentina. 2) Lanzamiento CD Inventario del Sistema de Humedales Costeros de la Comuna de Coquimbo." Más. Comunicado de prensa.

China I. Ms. Yin Hong, Ramsar National Focal Point, China State Forestry Administration, and Mr. Bao Damin, Ramsar National STRP Focal Point, have informed the Bureau that the Chinese translation of the WWD 2004 poster has been printed in 10,000 copies for distribution to governmental offices, Ramsar sites, NGOs, schools, etc. Here's a look at it.(The cameo, right, is just a tiny bit of it.)

China II. See International: Northeast Asia, above.

China III. John, Cai of IMMCP ( writes: "Dear sirs and ladies: Best regards from IMMCP! Herein, we present you the introduction about the Wetland day activities initiating in Leizhou peninsula in China. Please find the enclosure. In case there is any problem or suggestion, please do not hesitate to contact us. Your attention for our project will be greatly appreciated."

China: Hong Kong. Ms Vinci Li ( ), Wetland Park Officer, Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department (, Hong Kong SAR, writes: "Once again, Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Dept (AFCD) in Hong Kong will launch a series of programs to celebrate the event on 29 January 2004 (tentative date). We're finalizing the program and details for WWD 2004, will send the copy when ready."

China: Hong Kong. TSIM Siu Tai, PhD, Conservation Specialist (, Tai Po Environmental Association, Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, writes: To celebrate WWD 2004, Tai Po Environmental Association (TPEA), a local green group of Hong Kong, has organized a giant wall painting activity to promote the theme of WWD2004 at Pui Ching Primary School on 17 January 2004. This activity was funded by Environment and Conservation Fund, and Environmental Campaign Committee of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. Dr. TSIM Siu Tai, the Conservation Specialist of TPEA said, "some 60 primary students and their parents have enjoyed in the artwork design and painting a 20-m long paint on the school wall to promote the theme of WWD2004 - From the Mountains to the Sea Wetlands at Work for Us". Dr. TSIM added, "The giant wall paint is at a good location with many people and cars passing through, hence it is expected this wall paint could effectively give the message of appreciating our wetlands to public". Here are a few photos.

Colombia I.Maria del Pilar Lopez Mallari ( writes "Hi, my name is Pilar Mallari. ECO-PLAN (non profit environmental organization) is currently working in Ecuador and Colombia. Eco-forum is a strategy to widen the access to environmental education, and as part of that strategy, we are distributing a free newspaper in schools, universities and private companies. I was hoping to include the "Working for Wetlands Leaflet" in the January February edition of Eco-forum, also I requested a small grant of US 250 to our HQs, to print the poster "From the mountains to the sea". The idea is to print the poster here and provide one to those schools and universities we work with (for free as we are a non profit organization). The main cities of distribution will be Bogota and Cali (200 posters in each citiy) and Quito, Ecuador (50 posters). Eco-forum is a project financed by Eco-Plan, Sustainable Network Colombia and the Green Press. It's apolitical and aims to raise environmental awareness. For the January February edition, we will be printing 50.000 newspapers." -- "Attached please find the flyer that we adjusted here, initially we printed 8.000 and for this other activity on the 21st of February we will print 4.000 more."

Colombia II.Carlos A. Gonzalez Escobar ( está escribiendo: "como en los dos años anteriores seguiremos adelantando la campaña Humedales a ritmo de Fuga, en el territorio sur plano del municipio de Jamundí - Valle del Cauca - Colombia, cuenca alta del río Cauca. Abrazo de humedal para toda la familia Ramsar."

Colombia III.Alejandro Guerrero ( of the University of Los Andes at Merida writes that he works with the Amigos del Río (River Friends) for the Pamplonita River at Cucuta, a city located across the border from Venezuela, which during the driest season in this city (November 2002-April 2003) reduced its volume to its lowest historical level. The river feeds 1.5 million local population regularly, all of whom were affected by the drought. Amigos des Río is working to obtain resources to undertake the Pamplonita's rehabilitation and is already planning projects. "Hemos iniciado la preparación de la celebración del Día Mundial de los Humedales en Cúcuta (Colombia), espero a mediados de éste mes de Enero tener buenas noticias de la Corporación Autónoma Regional de la Frontera Nor_Oriental (CORPONOR Autoridad ambiental del departamento Norte de Santander), quien patrocinará la celebración conjuntamente con la Corporación Amigos del Río (ONG). La programación propuesta inicialmente, consiste en un ciclo de 25 conferencias en 20 colegios de la ciudad (Cúcuta), 4 universidades en jornadas de mañana y tarde y 5 conferencias a entidades gremiales. El objetivo es dar a conocer que es la Convención de Ramsar, que es un humedal, cuales son los que existen en las inmedicaciones de Cúcuta, conocer la precariedad del recurso agua en la ciudad y definir la importancia de los humedales y los servicios ecológicos y ambientales que presta, así como delinear las posibilidades de conservación de los humedales en el departamento."

Colombia IV. Gaby Garcia ( está escribiendo: "En el Departamento del Valle del Cauca, nos encontramos adelantando programas de conocimiento, conservación y uso racional de los Humedales, a traves de la Corporación Autonoma Regional del Valle del Cauca - CVC. Esta entidad se encarga de administrar los recursos naturales y velar por la conservación de los mismos, nuestra estructura administrativa cuenta con ocho Oficinas de gestión ambiental, donde se atienden alrededor de 3,000.000 de habitantes que es la población sujeto de intervención a la cual llegamos a traves de medios de comunicación (programa Cuentos Verdes) y de manera directa con programas de Educación Ambiental y atención de ususarios. Desde el año 2000, hemos celebrado el día mundial de los humedales a partir de las directrices que ustedes han dado e involucrando a las comunidades en ello, a tal punto que existen iniciativas comunitarias entorno a la celebración, que desde la instucionalidad son apoyadas. Este año no puede ser la excepcion y por tal motivo buscamos saber que tramite hay que adelantar para tener acceso a la información necesaria, para obtener los poster alusivos a la celebración y el video, puesto que la persona que se encargada de ello se encuentra por fuera del pais, y afortudamante este año la labor esta en mis manos. Cabe anotar que nos gustaria encontrar la pagina en español y el material en el mismo idioma, para asi llegar a cada una de nuestras comunidades, puesto que contamos con campesinos, minorias etnicas y demás."

Colombia V.Alma Isbel Ariza Ramírez (, Pontifícia Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá, está escribiendo: "La Facultad de Estudios Ambientales y Rurales- Departamento de ecología y Territorio, llevará a cabo el día 3 de febrero, la Celebración del DÍA MUNDIAL DE LOS HUMEDALES mediante una jornada académica con el fin de dar a conocer estudios desarrollados en el tema; por lo tanto, se invita a los estudiantes interesados en presentar sus trabajos y personas interesadas en asistir al evento, inscribirse en el correo electrónico" Informe, 09/02/04.

Colombia VI.María Rivera (, Ministerio de Ambiente, Desarrollo y Ordenamiento Territorial, está escribiendo: "Para celebrar el día mundial de los humedales hay muchos eventos a nivel nacional tanto por entidades gubernamentales y no gubernamentales. Nosotros hemos convocado a una jornada dirigida a una amplia divulgación sobre la importancia y valor de los humedales con la participación de niños y jovenes. Para esto en el humedal de Santa María del Lago, vamos tener una caminata de observación sobre las características, fauna y flora de los humedales y un concurso de pintura infantil con niños de 6-8 años y de 9-12 años. Las pinturas ganadoras serviran de motivo principal para la reimpresión de un plegable alusivo a los humedales y como motivo principal para el tercer curso de humedales que haremos este año. Así mismo, tendremos conferencias para dar a concer algunos avances en el tema como es la presentación de los resultados del estudio de valoración economica que terminamos el año pasado y la presentación de una cartilla de educación ambiental para niños sobre la cuenca del río Tunjuelito. Este día tambíen se anunciara la designación del Delta del Baudo como Humedal de Importancia Internacional."

Colombia VII.Jairo Valderrama Barco (, Fundación Humedales, Bogotá: Fotos, Celebración Día Mundial de los Humedales en la Escuela Guatancuy -Laguna de Fúquene.

Colombia VIII.Germán Galindo Hernández, Punto Focal No Gubernamental Colombia, Fundación Humedal la Conejera (, está escribiendo: "El día 28 de febrero hicimos un recorrido, por seis humedales de Bogotá con la participación de las organizaciones miembros de la Red de Humedales de Bogotá y la nueva Administración de Bogotá al final realizamos un Coversatorio y acordamos una agenda de trabajo tendiente a formular conjuntamente una política Distrital para el menjo sostenible de los humedales de la región que corrija las incoherencias que ha presentado las administraciones anteriores. Igualmente buscamos fortalecer el proceso de participación social denominado desarrollado por la Red de Humedales cordinada por la Fundación Humedal La Conejera."

Colombia IX.Henry González González, Presidente, Centro de Estudios Socioecológicos "Francisco José de Caldas" (, Palmira, está escribiendo: "El trabajo para este día constó de una contextualización sobre los Humedales basados en la información obtenida de la oficina de la Convención, este aparte teórico se dio en las instalaciones de la Universidad Nacional de Colombia - Sede Palmira-. Posteriormente se hizo un trabajo conjunto con otras organizaciones de la localidad en los Humedales Timbiquí y Guarinó en el área de jurisdicción de la Corporación Autónoma Regional del Valle del Cauca." Más.

Croatia I.Vlatka Scetaric Legan (, Society for the Conservation of Nature and Environment "Eleonora" (UZZPO Eleonora) in Zagreb, writes: "We are planning to prepare some event for World Wetlands Day (meetings, birwatching for kids) and your materials would be a great help for us."

Croatia II.Eugen Draganovic, Head of Protected Areas Section of the Ministry of Environmental Protection, Physical Planning and Contruction in Zagreb, writes that the Ministry is planning to make a poster and leaflet based on the Ramsar materials for WWD. Ms Jasminka Radovic, Head of Expertise Division in the State Institute for Nature Protection, writes later that "On January 30, the State Institute for Nature Protection organised the public event dedicated to celebration of the World Wetland Day 2002. On this occasion the issues of Ramsar Convention, WWD, Ramsar sites, as well as diversity of wetlands in Croatia ranging 'from mountains to the sea' have been in the focus." She has sent a brief report on this and other activities, with photos of the celebration as well as of the poster and leaflet.

Cuba. "On Feb 2, World Wetlands Day, Global Exchange's Sister Swamps (Pantanos Hermanos) Initiative celebrates its one-year anniversary and the initial success of the project. The San Francisco-based human rights organization began "Sister Swamps" as part of its Eco-Cuba Exchange, a program developed to raise awareness and promote collaboration around environmental issues between Cuba and the US. "Americans are consistently impressed with what Cubans are doing to conserve their wetlands, especially in terms of citizen education, community involvement and public policy", said Rachel Bruhnke, Eco-Cuba Coordinator. "We think Sister Swamps can be helpful in wetland conservation work in both Cuba and in the United States. It is both a scientific and a goodwill project, and has been enthusiastically received by participants in both countries." The press release is here.

Dominican Republic.Paz del Castillo Gutierrez (, Proyecto Araucaria Bahorucodela Cooperación Española (AECI) y la Oficina Nacional de Planificación de la República Dominicana (ONAPLAN), Santo Domingo, está escribiendo: "El Grupo Jaragua y el Proyecto Araucaria Bahoruco nos disponemos a celebrar el Día Mundial de los Humedales en la Provincia de Pedernales, region que cuenta con importantes humedales como son la Laguna de Oviedo y los humedales de Cabo Rojo que forman parte de zonas protegidas de gran valor para la avifauna local constituida en Parques Nacionales: Bahoruco y Jaragua, de montaña y costa respectivamente. Para este fin hemos preparado un pequeño proyecto de educación ambiental que te adjunto a continuación, para lo cual vamos a necesitar los siguientes materiales EN ESPAÑOL: Cd-rom con los archivos Quark Xpress para la realización del Afiche." ---"Estimada Señora Higgins, envío el informe de las actividades realizadas el día Mundial de los Humedales en la Provincia de Pedernales - República Dominicana por el Proyecto Araucaria Bahoruco - AECI - ONAPLAN y el Grupo Jaragua. Las actividades fueron interesantes, hubo mucha participación y el material donado por Ramsar fue muy útil."

Ecuador I. See Colombia I: Eco-Plan, above.

Ecuador II. Nadesha Montalvo Rueda, Fundación ANTISANA (,, writes: "Thank you for your help and all the information you sent me. I am attaching the poster we designed to his message as well as a short note on what was our WWD by the Antisana volcano in Ecuador, with the participation of the US ambassador." Here they are.

Egypt.Injy Galal, National Information Officer, MedWetCoast - Egypt (, writes: "For this year's WWD it is coincided with the Eid holiday. Eid is an Islamic holiday, very much like Christmas, where people celebrate with families and loved ones. Although - like last year - we had a lot of activities planned at the local level in each site, we discovered they would not be feasible to carry out during that holiday. On the positive side, however, we did secure a hosting on the 'Good Evening Egypt show', a show aired on the peak hour over national TV. It has the highest viewership rates, estimated at more than a million. The show hosted Project Manager Dr. Esam El Badri and Prime Consultant Dr. Mohamed El Kassas, who discussed wetlands in Egypt."

El Salvador. Arq. Emilia de Quintanilla, Asociación de Profesionales del Agua (, está escribiendo: "He aquí la reseña de las actividades de celebracion del dia de los humedales acompañada de unas fotos."

Estonia. Kai Kimmel (, Estonian Ramsar Committee, writes: "In Estonia different activities are being prepared for WWD 2004 at protected Ramsar sites. Members of several NGOs (Tartu Students Nature Protection Circle, Estonian Fund for Nature, Seminatural Community Conservation Association, Student Society for Environmental Protection "Sorex"), Matsalu Nature Reserve and Kihnu Strait Marine Park have celebrated WWD since 2000 with special wetland-seminar and voluntary working-camp at different wetland sites. This year the camp will be held at Vilsandi National Park, Saaremaa Island. Traditional wetland-day will be organised at Matsalu Nature Reserve. Children of local schools will present research papers and reserve staff will introduce wetland birds. Special meeting will be held at Silma Nature Reserve to discuss wetland management issues with local community. Ski-trip in frozen and snowy wetland for local schoolchildren will be organised at Endla Nature Reserve. Conservationists taking care of Alam-Pedja Nature Reserve are going to celebrate the reserve´s 10th anniversary in February. With birthday cake they will visit local communities to introduce and discuss future plans of wetland management."

Finland. Sirpa Pellinen (, Information officer at the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), writes that "The Ministry of Environment of Finland and the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) ( will have a press conference on 2nd February in Helsinki. 49 new Ramsar-sites will be designated. There will be 60 Ramsar sites in Finland from now on. The minister of environment, Mr Jan-Erik Enestam will represent the sites to the press. More information: Senior adviser, Mr Timo Asanti, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) tel +358 9 4030 0788 and +358 40 740 1597". The English language version of the subsequent press release can be seen at

France I. Julie Le Bihan (, Animatrice du pôle-relais zones humides intérieures, Fédération des Parcs naturels régionaux de France, écrit: " Cette année, le thème retenu pour la Journée mondiale des zones humides : "De la montagne à la mer, les zones humides travaillent pour nous", doit nous inciter à observer les zones humides en nous demandant de quelle manière elles "travaillent" dans notre intérêt, tant au niveau national que local, et comment les gérer de façon qu'elles continuent de prodiguer leurs bienfaits. Elle aura lieu le 2 février 2004 pour célébrer la signature à Ramsar (ville d'Iran) en 1971 de la "Convention relative aux zones humides d'importance internationale particulièrement comme habitats des oiseaux d'eau", ratifiée par la France en 1986. Comme les années précédentes, les pôles-relais relaient et coordonnent les événements organisés autour et à l'occasion de cette date anniversaire (cf. fichier joint et site du pôle-relais "zones humides intérieures" : La journée mondiale des zones humides 2004 arrive à grands pas... Préparons-la dès aujourd'hui!" Le Programme des manifestations organisées (PDF). Communiqué de presse (PDF).

France II.Alex Wignacourt ( writes that he is organizing a WWD wetland exposition at the Institut National des Sciences Appliquées de Strasbourg, INSA. "Strasbourg est la ville du parlement européen et dans ce contexte, nous envisageons d'organiser pendant cette journée mondiale des zones humides, des conférences thématiques."

France III. Aura Penloup ( of the Station Biologique de la Tour du Valat in the Camargue near Arles writes: "Je viens de recevoir les affiches, les brochures et les autocollants: c'est magnifique! Nous sommes notamment en train de préparer avec l'Agence Méditerranéenne de l'Environnement un appel à propositions pour les associations et autres gestionnaires en Languedoc-Roussillon, pour cette JMZH. Nous allons également mener des choses à l'échelle de tout le pôle relais lagunes méditerranéennes, donc également en Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur et en Corse, et en relation avec le niveau national: autres pôles relais, groupe Zones humides. Je vous tiens au courant lorsque nous aurons fait une synthèse du programme prévisionnel. Merci encore!"

France IV.Pascal Clerc, Centre d'Initiation et d'Éveil au Patrimoine d'Abbadia (CIEP Abbadia) (,, écrit: "Nous préparons une journée d'animation pour le grand public et le public scolaire à l'occasion de la Journée Mondiale des Zones Humides 2004. Cette journée se déroulera le 2 février à Hendaye 64700 FRANCE. Nous souhaitons pour cela recevoir tous les documents nécessaires à l'organisation et la médiatisation de cet événements (CD, Fichiers affiche, brochure et autocollant). Par avance, merci. Nous vous tiendrons régulièrement informé de ce projet. à très bientôt." PDF ici.

France V.Corinna Buisson (, Chargée de mission transfrontalière, Alsace Nature in Strasbourg, écrit: "A l'occasion de la journée mondiale des zones humides, l'association de protection de la nature alsacienne Alsace Nature et l'institut des zones alluviales du WWF (Rastatt, Allemagne) organisent comme l'année dernière un débat publique. . . . Alsace Nature et le WWF invitent à l'occasion du 2 février à participer à une réunion publique pour discuter de la gestion des zones humides en Alsace. Le débat sera organisé sur une demi journée l'après midi du 2 février au Conseil Général du Bas Rhin. Les partenaires en présence seront la Région Alsace, le Conseil général Bas-Rhin, la DIREN, la DDA, l'Agence de l'eau Rhin-Meuse et une organisation d'agriculteurs, les pêcheurs, Alsace Nature, le WWF." Ramsar's Senior Advisor for Europe, Tobias Salathé, will be participating in this discussion. Brochure (PDF). Compte rendu, avec photos.

France VI.Benoit Poitevin, Directeur, Ecomusée du marais salant (, écrit : " Merci de nous envoyer les fichiers Xpres concernant les JMZH 2004 pour nous permettre de prépare nos animations. Nous sommes sur un site Ramsar dans l'ile de Ré en France: le fierd 'Ars et la fosse de Loix. Plus d'infos sur nous notre site". . . . "Comme prévu nous organisons avec la ligue de Protection des oiseaux une conférence débat avec comme thémes la gestion des espéces envahissantes et le maitien des activités primaires sur les zones humides. Le dimanche 1 février à 15h aux Portes en Ré."

France VII.Améline Néreaud (, Documentaliste, Forum des Marais Atlantiques, Rochefort, écrit: "Afin de préparer la journée mondiale des zones humides, le Forum des marais atlantiques souhaiterait obtenir les documents en langue francaise préparés à cet effet, à raison de 150 exemplaires pour chaque produit. Nous organisons une journée Portes Ouvertes à Rochefort dimanche 1er février 2004 de 15 heures à 19 heures. Pour cette troisième édition, le Forum des Marais propose un film nature sur la "Vie sauvage dans les roseaux" et plusieurs interventions sur la gestion des marais charentais. Vous pourrez également découvrir plusieurs stands de produits de marais." Le programme (PDF).

France VIII.Eva Sempé, documentaliste de Sologne Nature Environnement (, Parc de Beauvais, Romorantin-Lanthenay, écrit: "Nous organisons une sortie, ouvert au grand public, sur les étangs de la Sologne dans le cadre de la Journée mondiale des Zones Humides le samedi 31 janvier. Pourrez-vous, s'il vous plaît, nous faire parvenir l'affiche, la brochure et les autocollants."

France IX.Katia Boudjemadi (, Chargée de mission eau douce, WWF-France in Paris, écrit: "Comme vous nous l'avions annoncé, vous trouverez ci-joint l'invitation [not included here] pour le débat sur l'avenir de la Camargue organisé par le WWF-France sur la Péniche le Marcounet à Paris le 3 février 2004 à 18h30. En présence du Président du WWF-France, de la Directrice du Comité Départemental du Tourisme des Bouches du Rhône, du Directeur de l'Office de Tourisme d'Arles, du Directeur des Marais du Vigueirat, de la Directrice Artistique de la compagnie de théâtre camarguaise ILOTOPIE et du Directeur du Parc Naturel Régional de Camargue."

France X.Emmanuel Fery (, La Maison de l'Oiseau et du Poisson (, Outines, écrit: "Je tiens tout d'abord à vous informer que la Maison de l'Oiseau et du Poisson, située au Lac du Der Chantecoq (51-site Ramsar), organisera ce jour là une animation, conjontement avec l'ONCFS, gestionnaire de la réserve du Lac du Der-Chantecoq (RNCFS) dans le cadre de la JO des Zones Humides. Notre structure accueille 21 000 visiteurs en moyenne par année de toutes catégories (dont une moitié de scolaires jusqu'au BTS et niveau supérieur, IUFM etc...). L'animation se déroulera donc le 02 février 2004 l'après-midi à l'accueil de la Maison de l'Oiseau et du Poisson, avec des explications sur les zones humides, ce qu'est Ramsar sera suivie d'une sortie sur le terrain, en bordure du lac du Der-Chantecoq."

France XI. Claude Guisset, Conservateur de la Réserve Naturelle de Py, Centre d'Initiation à l'Ecologie Montagnarde (, écrit: "Dans le cadre des journées mondiales consacrées aux zones humides, avec l'aide de la Région Languedoc-Roussillon et de la DIREN LR, nous organisons le samedi 31 janvier prochain, une journée de découverte et de protection d'un cours d'eau de montagne au village de Py (France; Pyrénées-Orientales). Nous avons prévu en fin d'après-midi une présentation en salle des enjeux liés aux zones humides et je pense que la cassette vidéo qui a été réalisée à ce sujet nous serait trés utile."

France XII.Amélie Lesaffre (, Chargée de mission Maison de l'eau et de la Rivière (, écrit: "Nous avons eu vos coordonnées par la fédération des parcs naturels régionaux. Nous organisons une soirée-débat dans le cadre des journées mondiales des Zones humides, le 2/02. Merci de nous les adresser rapidement (sinon il sera trop tard), les supports que vous proposez: K7 vidéo (en français), affiches, brochure ZH."

France XIII.Nicolas Cotrel, coordinateur naturaliste à Deux-Sèvres Nature Environnement (, écrit: "Nous organisons 1 sortie de découverte et de réflexion sur un marais appartenant au marais poitevin située à Niort le 1er février. Nous aurions donc souhaité disposer d'affiches (20 environ) permettant d'annoncer cette sortie sur Niort."

France XIV. Joanne Anglade-Garnier, Responsable pédagogique, Réserve naturelle de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines (, Trappes, écrit: "Vous trouverez ci-joint deux photos ilustrant l'exposition qui a été réalisée par l'équipe de la Réserve naturelle de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines à l'occassion de la journée Ramsar du 2 février 2004. Cette exposition est destinée au grand public non familié aux problématiques sur la protection des zones humides (panneaux : gestion des roselières par la réserve naturelle de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, zones humides et imaginaire, la biodiversité une garantie pour l'avenir, l'étang travaille pour vous). Une classe en ZEP de la région a également été invitée à visiter la Réserve et à découvrir la richesse de ce patrimoine naturel exceptionnel. Les documents que vous nous avez envoyés nous ont été d'une aide certaine."

Georgia. The Caucasus Environmental NGO Network (CENN,,, reports: "Integrated Coastal Zone Management Centre (ICZM) is the implementation unit for the World Bank and Global Environment Facility financed "Georgia Integrated Coastal Management Project", which supports the establishment of the internationally designated Ramsar site and wetland protected areas: the Kolkheti National Park and the Kobuleti Nature Reserve. As part of the World Wetlands Day activities in Georgia, a new Georgian documentary, devoted specifically to Kolkheti wetlands, will be premiered on the World Wetlands Day: 2 February, 17:30-8:00, Imedi-TV. In addition, a Ramsar video, translated into Georgian language, will be broadcast with national coverage: 2 February, 21:45, Channel 1 of Georgian TV."

Germany. See France V: Alsace Nature, above.

Greece I. See International: Prespa Transboundary Park.

Greece II.Maria Anagnostopoulou (, MedWet Communications Officer, writes: "A WWD event is being organised by the MedWet Coordination Unit: On 2 February, the MW-CU will hold an information/celebration event at Villa Kazouli (its seat), in Athens. The event wishes to inform the services of the Greek Government which are involved in wetland management and conservation, NGOs, the MW countries’ embassies in Greece, representatives of the European Commission, the protected areas management bodies and their steering committee, the press and other interested agencies and individuals, with regard to the tools and activities of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands and its Mediterranean Initiative - MedWet, and to the benefits emerging from their implementation." Ramsar's Deputy Secretary General, Nick Davidson, participated in this event, and here is Maria's report, with photographs.

Greece III. Elissavet Tzovani, Public Awareness Officer, LIFE-Nature Project "Conservation Management of Strofylia-Kotychi" (, Lappa, Achaia, writes: "The Information Centre of the Ramsar site: "Strofylia forest and Kotychi lagoon" is organizing a community clean-up and an educational visit to the major lagoons of the site (Kotychi and Prokopos), in order to celebrate World Wetlands Day with the participation of schoolchildren of the area. Estimated number of participants: 300."

Greece IV. Eleni Makrigianni of the Evros Delta Visitor Centre writes that "World Wetlands Day was very successful this year!" 120 schoolchildren from surrounding villages participated in an event that included a slideshow about the values and products of Evros Delta (presented by a school girl), educational games, and environmental crafts. Here is her report, with photos of the event and of the Ramsar poster translated into Greek.

Guatemala.Lic. Jorge Alberto Ruiz Ordoñez, Director General, CECON, está escribiendo: "Reciban un cordial saludo de parte del Centro de Estudios Conservacionistas -CECON- de la Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala a cargo del Sitio Ramsar 488, Biotopo Laguna del Tigre-Río Escondido. En el marco de la celebración del Día Mundial de los Humedales, conmemorando la firma del convenio Ramsar, se ha planificado una celebración organizada por este Centro, consistente en una serie de conferencias magistrales que versarán sobre los principales logros y avances en el manejo de los humedales mas destacados del país a la luz del tema del presente año." Más.Informe.

Honduras. Secretaría de Recursos Naturales y Ambiente, Dirección General de Biodiversidad (,, Tegucigalpa: "En el marco del Día Mundial de los Humedales, se realizaron diversas actividades en Honduras. Las actividades estuvieron orientadas a divulgar los principios de la Convención, de conservación y uso racional de los humedales como ecosistemas esenciales para mantener la diversidad biológica, para beneficio de las actuales y futuras generaciones. Asimismo, dar a conocer a la población los Humedales de Importancia Internacional en el país como prestadores de bienes y servicios importantes desde una perspectiva ambiental, económica y social. En ese sentido, en coordinación con organizaciones privadas y la Secretaría de Recursos Naturales y Ambiente a través de la Dirección General de Biodiversidad, se publicó un afiche sobre los sitios Ramsar en el país, se facilitó información a periodistas y se ofrecieron entrevistas por los medios de comunicación principalmente por la radio, medio al que tiene acceso la mayor parte de la población hondureña. También en uno de los periódicos de mayor divulgación, se publicó información en relación a la importancia del Convenio y los compromisos asumidos con el fin de promover la conservación de los humedales."

Hungary. Students at Central European University, Budapest, held an awareness event for WWD and a report, with photos, can be seen here.

Iceland. Gudrun M. H. Kloes ( of the Atvinnuþróunarfélag Norðurlands vestra (Bureau of Tourism and Innovation) in Hvammstangi (, writes that "in the Northwest of Iceland we plan to organize a conference on issues of Arnarvatnsheiði and Tvídægra, the largest wetlands in Iceland. . . . Most likely I can send you a schedule of our conference in the middle of January, and a report will follow in February."

India I.Dr Francy Kakkassery (, Research & Post-Graduate Department of Zoology, St.Thomas' College (University of Calicut), Trichur, Kerala, and officer in the Limnological Association of Kerala, writes that: "Every year we conduct different programmes in connection with World Wetlands Day. This year we have planned to conduct a 3-day (2nd-4th Feb 2004) national seminar on "Inland Water Resources and Environment" . In fact, it is a very good gathering of about 350 scientists and environmentalists all around India and the presentations of their findings. Besides , we have also arranged a field visit to a recently declared Ramsar Site, Ashtamudi Wetland. You will also get some more information from our web site, kindly go through it:"

India II. Deepak Sethi of the State Council for Science, Technology and Environment in Kasumpti, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh ( writes that customized copies of Ramsar's WWD resource materials will be distributed during competitions in catchment schools in the Pong Wetland area and community interaction activities in the area.

India III. Ajit Pattanaik ( writes that an impressive series of activities, including raft races, painting competitions, and treasure hunt quizzes, are planned for the villages around Chilika Lake in Orissa, to celebrate both World Wetlands Day and "Asian Wetlands Week" through to 7 February, in collaboration with Ramsar Center Japan. The Ramsar brochure "Working for Wetlands" has also been translated into the local language Oriya. Here is the programme.

India IV. Dr Jnanendra Rath (, with the NGO "Development Innovators" in Bhubaneswar, Orissa, writes: "We concentrate our work on biodiversity conservation in wetlands of Orissa and wise use of resources. WWD was celebrated in Chilika lake every year by the Chilika Development Authority. Recently Bhaterkanika was also added as a new Ramsar site of Orissa, and besides these two major wetlands there are also other wetlands in Orissa, namely Ansupa lake, Hirakud, Mahanadi delta, etc. This year we are planning to celebrate WWD in other wetlands, Bhaterkanika, Ansupa, Hirakud, etc., and to make people aware about the values of wetlands."

India V. Vivek Kulkarni (, Head, Mangrove Project, writes that the "Soonabai Pirojsha Godrej Marine Ecology Centre is a small organisation working in Mumbai towards mangrove conservation. We have been active since 1985 and contributed largely to saving the city's mangroves. Currently, we are working with the government to declare Mumbai's largest mangrove area, Thane Creek, as a Ramsar site and the matter has been cleared from our State Govt. and sent to the Central Govt. for submission to the Bureau. Our first WWD was celebrated in 1998 by holding a seminar on conservation of Mumbai Mangroves along with WWF-India, United States Asia Environment Partnership, and Panto-Ulema Inc. Last year, WWD was celebrated with about 250 environmentalists, and a mobile van for mangrove education was donated by Vasant Seth Foundation to Bombay Natural History Society, 122 year old environmental organisation from Mumbai. This year also, we intend to continue our education projects and would appreciate printed material from the Bureau." Here is the illustrated report sent by Laxmikant Deshpande (, Education Officer, Mangrove Project, Godrej & Boyce Mfg. Co. Ltd..

India VI.Chander Parkash (, Lecturer in the Department of Zoology at DAV College in Amritsar, Punjab, writes: "As in previous years, this year too, we have decided to celebrate World Wetlands Day and we are planning wide level activities on 2nd Feb. 2004. This year we're planning to encourage employees from some government offices to participate in the activities so that they can also be made aware about the functions & values of wetlands. Of course, students (school, colleges & university), teachers & local villagers in and around the three Ramsar sites in Punjab (i.e. Harike, Kanjli & Ropar) will remain our main target groups. We are planning for guest lectures by wetland ecologists. I shall highly appreciate if you will be able to send us WWD resource materials for a gathering of about 1000 persons."

India VII. Ms Rifat Manzoor (, EE coordinator at the Valley Commonwealth Public School in Rampora, Srinagar, Kashmir, writes: "This year World Wetlands Day is being observed in our school with a difference. Our school organisation has decided to visit three world famous wetland reservoirs (Hygam, Hokharsar, and Walur in Kashmir) and the students have been directed to prepare a complete project report on the visit including the statistics. And a debate competition on the same subject among the students is being planned. In order to make this event more public and to engage the other students and educators of the area, please send us print material so that we may be able to make this event a reality."

India VIII. Dr Satnam Singh Ladhar (, Principal Scientific Officer (Env), Punjab State Council for Science & Technology, Chandigarh, writes: "I assure you that we will celebrate World Wetlands Day with great enthusiasm. . . . As you may be aware, we have three Ramsar wetland sites in Punjab State. These are Harike, Kanjli and Ropar. We intend to celebrate WWD-2004 at all three sites as we have been doing earlier. During earlier years we have also been giving advertisements in the News Papers to invite public attention for their participation." Here is a report from Lakhbir Singh, president of the youth organization PAHAL (

India IX.Dr Anish Dua (, Aquatic biology Lab, Zoology Department, GND University in Amritsar, Punjab, writes: "Each year we are celebrating the WWD with great enthusiasm in our region. We are situated in the middle of three Ramsar sites in the state of Punjab.The WWD celebration at our end involves educating school /college and University students and teachers about the wetlands and their importance. I assure you that the material shall be widely circulated/displayed and exhibited." Brief report here.

India X.Arun Kumara ( and Dr. R. K.Ranjan Singh (, General secretary of the Manipur Association For Science And Society (MASS) write that "As usual we are organising world wetlands Day 2004 at Imphal (Manipur) and Manipur University (Canchipur, Imphal), particularly Loktak Lake." Later: "Dear Ramsar, We would like to report that the Manipur Association for Science and Society (MASS) observed the WWD 2004 with the following activities. 1/2/2004 Nature Visit and 9th-Mid-Winter Water Fowl Consus of Loktak Lake. 2.2.2004 Seminar on From Mountain to Seas with the theme From Mountain to Lakes/wetlands of Manipur at Imphal. Detailed report will be sent to you."

India XI. Thupalli Ravishankar ( writes from Godavari Mangroves, Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary, Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh: "World Wetland Day was celebrated at Corangi village abutting the sprawling 23,000 ha. of mangroves under the Coringa Wildlife Sanctuary near Kakinada, Andhra Pradesh, India. Nearly 300 local women (200) and men (100) who are members of Eco-Development Committee (Forest Conservation Councils) celebrated the World Wetlands Day. The World Wetland Day was organized by M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation, which is implementing a Community participated Mangrove conservation Project at Kakinada." Here is the illustrated report.

India XII. A. Kishan IFS (, Deputy Conservator of Forestry, writes: "The World Wetland Day 2004 was celebrated in Kanna English medium school, Guntur, Andhra Pradesh, wherein the importance of wetlands for sustenance of mankind was explained to school children. A photograph is attached for reference. The programme was organised by Social Forestry Division, Guntur and National Green Corps, Guntur District. For details of National green Corps and activities of Social Forestry Division, Guntur, please visit"

India XIII. Aswin Pomal ( says that on WWD "Our Pelican Nature Club - Bhuj (Kutch, Gujrat) celebrated this day with counting of water birds at Kukma village tank & Lair reservoir at these" and sends bird counts totaling 76, including 17 Little Grebe. Members S.N.Varu, Ashwin Pomal, T.B.Chaya, Jaysinh Parmar, & K.D.Chauhan took part in this programme.

India XIV.S. K. Sharma (, president of the Environment Society of India and secretary of the Children's Alliance for Protection of the Environment, based in Chandigarh, writes: "The Society recently organized a grand function to welcome the migratory birds. With this the society completed the 25th festival which is said to be the pioneering efforts in the world towards creating love for wildlife among the children, teachers, and common man, The details are enclosed. I would be grateful if you kindly published the same in your reports and journals." Here.

India XV.Jugal Tiwari (, Ecologist, of the Seawater Forests Initiative in Eritrea, has been sending reports and photographs of WWD celebrations at Seawater Farms Eritrea for some years, as e.g. in 2003. This year he was visiting Keoladeo National Park in Bharatpur in India, and has sent a WWD report from there.

India XVI. Dr. R J Rao ( ), Conservation Biology Unit, School of Studies in Zoology, Jiwaji University, Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh, has sent a brief report of a WWD seminar at the University and field trip to the Chambal River.

Indonesia.Yullia, Anggota Muda LAWALATA IPB (, writes: "LAWALATA IPB was formed in September 21st 1974 . . . for uniting between nature lovers at IPB which in that time were apart and to unite interest and will, talent and creativity of nature-loving students of IPB generally from all departments of the faculty in Bogor Agriculture University (IPB), West Java. On the occasion of wetland day in February 2nd, 2004 LAWALATA IPB and association of silvy (forestry) students will hold a programme for celebrate and introduce widely about it to community."

Ireland I.Karin Dubsky (, National Coordinator for Coastwatch, writes that an All Ireland Celebration will be held at Trinity College Dublin and that WWF, RSPB, and the Wetlands Trust "each will do something in and around WWD (with the Trinity College event being the joint action). For next year we have formed a committee and will plan a series of joint events. The Northern Ireland government will commit time and funds. Things may even get better in the South - with great wetland interest" amongst government authorities. Here are some photos of the All Ireland Celebration.

Ireland II. Claire Shellshear ( of Wood Environmental Management Ltd., Ballymount, north of Dublin, writes: "There will be a workshop where representatives from Coastwatch, Birdwatch and Earthwatch will present wetlands in Ireland, projects for the local estuary and a reed bed wastewater treatment system. This will be followed by a walk and birdwatching session in Sonairte's own estuarine wetland. The day will be free for the public, and people are encouraged to bring their own binoculars." Here's a report by Michael Gunn of Coastwatch.

Ireland III. Dr. Colin Byrne (, Project Co-ordinator, South Eastern River Basin District Project, Carlow County Council, writes: "I attach a press release and leaflet we produced for World Wetlands Day 2004. Each local authority (11) displayed in public areas; leaflets, Ramsar posters and leaflets and a video on catchment management called "from source to sea" produced by the Fisheries Board here in Ireland. We received coverage in the local media and an interview on regional radio. Planning for 2005 already!" Press release. Leaflet (PDF).

Islamic Republic of Iran.Yasaman Rajabkhah ( writes: "The World Wetland Day was celebrated in Iran on February 2nd 2004 at the old Ramsar Hotel in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. More than 200 people including experts, managers, regional authorities and non-governmental organizations attended this event." Here is a brief illustrated report.

Israel. Dr. Reuven Ortal (, Director of the Department of Aquatic Ecology, Nature and Parks Authority, writes: "This year the Nature and Parks Authority, the Ministry of the Environment and the Water Commission are organising together the "Love for Nature, Water and the Environment" week. During this week, from 20-27 March, we will concentrate on the "Nature's Right to Water". A publication named with this title was published (in Hebrew) Environment to draw attention to the need of water for nature conservation as a policy. Activities will include a list of guided tours for schools in wetland reserves and national parks, an open day (free entrance) in reserves and parks, a scientific workshop and other activities focusing on water shortage issues and wetland restoration. The main subject is the basic need of water for the Israeli rivers and wetlands. Our Ministry of the Environment is publishing a special issue of e-bulletin (February, 2004), in honour of the World Wetlands Day. This bulletin can be reached through the following link: It will feature articles on Israel's Ramsar sites - the En Afeq and Hula Nature Reserves - and information on the above new publication "Nature's Right to Water"."

Italy I. Emilio Beltrame ( writes: "As the Administrative body of the Regional nature reserve and Ramsar Site "Valle Cavanata" (Friuli-Venezia Giulia, Italy) we are planning a special guided tour to celebrate the WWD2004. It would be very nice if we had some copies of the poster, leaflet and sticker; since Italian is not available, English would be fine."

Italy II.ParcoInforma: Foglio Notizie del Parco Delta del Po Emilia - Romagna (,, Comacchio: "2 febbraio: giornata mondiale delle zone umide Delle zone umide del Parco del Delta del Po dell'Emilia - Romagna ne hanno parlato anche sul Delta del Danubio nell'ambito delle manifestazioni organizzate dall'Agenzia per la Biosfera del Danubio per la giornata del 2 febbraio. "Dalle montagne al mare - le zone umide al lavoro per noi" il tema scelto per l'edizione 2004. Nel delta del Po i destinatari privilegiati per la "giornata" sono stati i giovani. Il Parco del Delta del Po dell'Emilia - Romagna - che racchiude, al suo interno 11 zone umide di importanza internazionale inserite nella Convenzione Ramsar (Iran 1971) - in tale occasione ha predisposto un'iniziativa di "conoscenza" di due dei siti più rappresentativi dell'area: la Salina di Comacchio e quella di Cervia. I ragazzi di due classi prime delle scuole medie di Comacchio (Ferrara) e Alfonsine (Ravenna) assistiti da esperti di educazione ambientale hanno avuto la possibilità di conoscere la "storia" naturalistica di ambienti straordinari. [Twinning of Po Delta and Danube Delta in Romania gave the opportunity to the latter (Danube Biosphere Reserve Authority) to speak also about the Po Delta on 2 Feb. under this year's theme. In the Po Delta (including 11 different Ramsar Sites) the activities focused on youth, trying to increase the knowledge on two of the Ramsar Sites: Comacchio and Cervio saltpans. Two school classes of Comacchio and Alfonsine were taught by environmental education experts about the history and environment of these extraordinary sites.]

Jamaica. "Jamaica conducted a week of events (February 2nd-6th) in commemoration of World Wetlands Day, 2004; these activities included an open day, presentations, poster competition, drama production, exhibitions and extensive media coverage (radio, print and television). Activities were held across the island in the parishes of Portland, Westmoreland, St. Elizabeth and Kingston, which are located along the north-eastern, western, and southern coasts of Jamaica. The activities were both educational and entertaining in nature." Here is the well-illustrated report.

Japan I.Reiko Nakamura ( of the Ramsar Centre Japan writes that RCJ have launched plans for an Asian Wetlands Week (AWW), beginning on February 2 and continuing until February 8th 2004. Their aim is to encourage organizations throughout the region to plan activities during the week to raise awareness of wetland values and benefits. They hope that this year's theme "Wetlands love children, children love wetlands" will encourage organizers to develop activities that will bring children to wetlands, get them involved in wetland activities, and assist them to consider what they can do to help conserve their wetlands. Organizations that join the campaign will be sent a package of AWW materials, and a report of their activities will be posted on the Centre's Web site. Afterward: Visit their Asian Wetlands Week web pages at to see the reports and photos from activities throughout the region.

Japan II. See International: Northeast Asia, above.

Kenya I . Bernard Ogwoka ( of the Sea Turtle Conservation Committee in Mombasa writes that his organization is organizing a WWD function with schools and communities along the coastal region of Kenya. "We also want create more awareness on wetlands and participants especially school children need to understand the concept so that they can come up with songs,drama,dance, poems and drawing art on this year's theme.I have communicated to some few companies and some conservation stakeholders and seemingly they are willing to support us.On 7th February 2004 is a meeting for all school teachers (patrons) regarding this day." Here is Bernard Ogwoka's subsequent report in PDF format.

Kenya II.Sirma Chepkonga, Project Officer Environmental Education and Community Development, WWF-Lake Bogoria Community Based Wetlands Project ( in Marigat, writes: "The Project is based at Lake Bogoria (Kenya's third Ramsar Site), and its objective is to increase benefits to local stakeholders through sustainable natural resources use around the Lake catchment basin, ecological monitoring of the catchment basin, preparation of a participatory management plan as per the Ramsar Convention guidelines, and raising community awareness on relevant policies. During last year's WWD, several activities were undertaken, as a build-up towards WWD and on the actual day (please find attached a summary report of last year's WWD activities). WWD materials will boost our WWD activities this year especially on awareness creation on how wetlands work for us and how we can work for wetlands."

Kenya III. Leonard Muhanga Likhotio ( writes: "On behalf of Nature Kenya, Kakamega Environmental Education Program (KEEP) and on my own behalf, I would like to express our heartfelt gratitude for your assistance to the program through donation of teaching aids. . . . We would really love to participate in the World Wetlands Day celebrations but I'm afraid that the date is too near and we needed time to introduce the topic to schools before going out for the proposed trip. As a result, we have planned to visit a wetland in the Rift Valley (Kingwal Swamp) during the World Environmental Day celebrations in June next year. We intend to use this opportunity to create awareness of the World Wetlands Day that is celebrated in February every year, with a view of preparing the community groups and the schools in general to mark this annual event."

Kenya IV. Stephen K. Mailu ( in Kisumu writes: "We, the Lake Victoria Environmental Management Project (LVEMP) ( in Kenya, in association with implementing institutions of one of the project components (Wetlands Management Component), wish to request for materials for the World Wetlands Day 2004. Tentative plans to commemorate the day are in their initial stages and these are being organised by the National Environmental Management Authority. Since we forsee a large following, we wish to request for a minimum 100 pieces each for distribution across the site and Lake Victoria catchment where there are many wetlands of varying sizes distributed across the catchment. We will commit to sending you reports about this years WWD2004 activities which are scheduled to be held in the Sironga wetland, Nyamira District, Kenya-chosen because of its large-scale brick making and extensive human ecroachment it has been subjected to over the past."

Kenya V.Mathew M. Shilabula, Chairman of M.C.Dev. Group ( in Kakamega, writes: "We are an Environmental Organization based in Western Kenya. Kindly send us materials . . . to mark this important Day on the District level."

Korea, Republic of, I. Walking for Wetlands: World Wetlands Day 2004. "International samboilbae [ritual walk] for wetlands, for Saemangeum, for the Spoon-billed Sandpiper and for the people of Korea, February 1st and 2nd 2004." The NGO WBKEnglish Web site has an informative article about the WWD demonstrations planned internationally to express concern about the Saemangeum Reclamation Project, as well as background and pictures of the "three steps and one bow" samboilbae ritual walk. Coordinated samboilbae walks are being encouraged for threatened Ramsar Sites or potential Ramsar Sites in several other countries, including the UK, US, Switzerland, Germany, Finland, and Belgium, according to the Web site, with group statements at the end. Overall coordination of the event is undertaken by WBKEnglish and the Korean Federation for Environmental Movement (KFEM), and more information can be found at

Korea, Republic of, II. See International: Northeast Asia, above.

Lao PDR I. See International: Mekong River Basin, above.

Lao PDR II.Roger Mollot ( Freshwater Officer with the WWF Lao Program ( in Vientiane, wrote in October: "I would be interested in receiving the WWD package from the Ramsar Bureau. The CD ROM would be useful as well, should we be able to organize an event here in Lao PDR. Thanks for the advance warning for WWD 2004, we will begin discussion with our government partners to see if we can organize something."

Lesotho. Ms. Limpho Motanya, Wetlands Unit, Department of Water Affairs ( in Maseru, writes: "The Wetlands Unit of the Department of Water Affairs Lesotho is leading preparations for celebrating the World Wetlands Day in Lesotho and would be grateful to receive the promotional material for the day as depicted on the Ramsar Web site". A full, subsequent report is available here.

Luxembourg. For the third year in a row, the BirdLife partner Lëtzebuerger Natur- a Vulleschutzliga (LNVL) and the foundation Hëllef fir d'Nature have dedicated a special issue of their environmental magazine Regulus to World Wetlands Day. "Cette journée a une place fixe dans le cadre des activités de nos deux associations: à part l'organisation de visits de zones humides (le Luxembourg n'a jusqu'à présent qu'une seule zone Ramsar), nous profitons de cette occasion pour opérer un appel aux dons pour la sauvegarde de zones humides au Grand-Duché. La campagne d'information et de sensibilisation du public via la presse luxembourgeoise écrite et parlée connaît un franc succès."

Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of.Aleksandar Nastov, national focal point for the Ramsar Convention, and Prof Dr Branko Micevski, president of the Macedonian Ramsar Committee, have sent a description of the WWD event hosted by the Committee and the Ministry of Environment and Physical Planning, presided over by the Minister, Mr Ljubomir Janev.

Macedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic of. See International: Prespa Transboundary Park.

Malawi. Hastings Maloya (, Programme Officer for Environmental Education and Communication at the Mulanje Mountain Conservation Trust (MMCT), writes that "in Malawi, not many organisations are in the conservation of wetlands. Because the focus of MMCT is seen as conservation of the Mountain and its resources, not many people relate our activities with wetlands, and we would like to take a leading role this year in the sensitisation of World Wetlands Day. Your press release therefore has come at just the right time." Here is a newspaper interview with Hastings Maloya by Edith Betha for the Nation, Malawi's leading daily newspaper.

Malaysia I. Jaya Mary Asirvatham, CEPA Programme Officer, Malaysian Nature Society ( in Kuala Lumpur, writes: "The Malaysian Nature Society, being the local NGO CEPA group, have been actively involved with the school programme. We have just organized a school competition on Conserving the Wetlands. The students have become so much interested in wetlands projects. Some of them have come up with constructed wetlands in their schools, adding fruiting trees, aquatic plants, and herbs around the ponds. Some of them are also involved with local community in recuperating the river quality. The teachers are keen and have been asking for resource materials for their library as well as to understand wetlands ecosystem. FYI, MNS has established 187 Nature Lovers Club in the country collaborating with the Ministry of Education."

Malaysia II.Ann Armstrong ( from Kuching, Sarawak, writes: "I am writing for the Malaysian Nature Society - Kuching Branch. There has been an increase interest in wetlands and we are planning to capitalize on this. We would like to receive hard copies of the materials that have been developed for World Wetlands Day 2004 for this purpose."

Malaysia III. Cheong Weng Chun ( of the Nature Interpretive Centre of Taman Wetland Purtajaya writes that the Putrajaya Wetlands will be organizing its World Wetlands Day celebrations for 2004 during the month of March.

Malaysia IV.Anne Majanil, Interpretive Officer, Johor National Park Corporation (, writes: "We are happy to inform you that Johor National Parks Corporation held a clean-up campaign in conjunction with WWD 2004 at our RAMSAR site Pulau Kukup, District of Pontian, in the State of Johor, Malaysia on 8 February 2004. The clean-up saw the participation from all walks of life including government bodies, NGOs, the local communities, schools, private sector and many more. Please browse our website for the news coverage of the event. Please go to or"

Mali I. Almoustapha M. Maiga (,Wetlands International, écrit: "Je suis le Chargé de la Formation et l'Information au bureau de Wetlands International du Mali, basé à Sévaré. Je demande ce matériel car cette année nous devons participer au Salon International de l'Eau (SIDEAU), organisé par le Gouvernement du Mali à Bamako, du 24 au 31 janvier 2004, et comme chaque année nous prendrons part à un débat sur la radio nationale sur les zones le 02 février, avec la Direction Nationale de la Conservation de la Nature et l'UICN."

Mali II.Mali has designated a greater-than-4 million hectare portion of the Inner Niger Delta, incorporating all three of its existing Ramsar Sites, a large step in efforts by Mali, Ramsar, and WWF's Living Waters Programme to bring integrated wetland management to the Niger Basin. Here is Abou Bamba's address (en français).

Martinique. Nadine Venumière, Parc Naturel Régional de la Martinique (Mission Scientifique du PNRM,, écrit: "Nous souhaitons réaliser cette année un inventaire des Zones humides de la Martinique. Nous avons pris connaissance de votre annonce sur la journée mondiale des zones humides. Nous ne pourrons y participer cette année mais ce sera possible l'année prochaine. Nous souhaiterions tout de même recevoir la brochure "Travailler pour les zones humides" en fichier PDF."

Mauritius. Manickchand Puttoo (, Research and Development Officer for Wetlands, writes that "the National Parks and Conservation Service, the national focal point of Ramsar for Mauritius, will be inaugurating a visitors centre at our first nominated international Ramsar Site this year during World Wetlands Day."

Mexico I. 2 February was marked in Mexico by a celebration for the inauguration of the 6th Workshop on Management and Conservation of Wetlands in Mexico (6o Taller sobre Manejo y Conservación de Humedales en México) at the Universidad de Guadalajara, Zapopan, Jalisco, attended by Francisco Ramírez Acuña, the Governor of Jalisco state; Alberto Cárdenas-Jiménez, Ministro de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales de México; Peter Bridgewater, the Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention; Duane Shroufe, president of the North American Wetlands Conservation Council; Steve Williams, Director of the US Fish and Wildlife Service; Ernesto Enkerlin, Presidente de la Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP); and Georgita Ruíz, Directora General de Vida Silvestre-Semarnat. Among the activities was the official announcement of the designation of 34 new Wetlands of International Importance, the inauguration of the Workshop, and a visit to Laguna Sayula, one of the new Ramsar Sites. Here's the report. See also

Mexico II.Fuensanta Rodriguez (, concerning the Isla Isabel Ramsar Site: "Foro de análisis y discusión sobre la situación actual de los humedales en Nayarit, que se llevará a cabo en la Universidad Autónoma de Nayarit, donde participarán académicos y funcionarios de Semarnat (Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente) y personal de la Reserva de la Biosfera Isla Isabel; Consejo Asesor del ANP; Instituto Nayarita para el Desarrollo Sustentable (INADES). Estará dirigido a estudiantes de diversas facultades como, Escuela de Biología, Escuela de Turismo, Ingeniería Pesquera, para mencionar algunas."

Mexico III.Miguel Angel Lopez Valdez (, Jefe de Proyectos, Reserva de la Biosfera Ría Lagartos, está escribiendo: "Las actividades a realizar el 2 de Febrero son las siguientes: 1. Exposición de carteles, Centro de Visitantes e Interpretación de la Naturaleza de Rio lagartos; 2. Conferencia sobre el Humedal Ria Lagartos, con alumnos de las escuelas Secundarias de Rio Lagartos, San Felipe; 3. Recorrido en el Sendero ecoturistico Tatzulem."

Mexico IV.Jacobo Mugarte Moo (, Parque Nacional Huatulco, está escribiendo: "Hemos convocado a las autoridades municipales, Fonatur, a la Universidad del Mar, a los prestadores de servicios turísticos, a algunas ONG's y al Comisariado de Bienes Comunales para que en conjunto realicemos algunos eventos en el marco de la celebración del Día Mundial de los Humedales. Y aunque nuestra primera reunión formal, para ponernos a trabajar al respecto, será este lunes 26 de enero, te adelanto que será bajo tres eventos: a) Limpieza de playas, cuencas fluviales y carretera federal. b) Foro de conferencias para estudiantes de secundaria y bachillerato, prensa, radio y público en general. c) Visitas guiadas a tres humedales: lagunares y bahías."

Mexico V.Ramón Flores Moreno (, Chiapas, está escribiendo: "Aunque un poco fuera de tiempo le envio un pequeño informe de la forma en como usamos los materiales, que amablemente nos proporcionaron, para seguir difundiendo la importancia de los humedales y bueno ahora que en nuestro país se dio a conocer que somos el tercero en proteger este tipo de áreas, tenemos que buscar mecánismos para no desistir en esta tan importante misión que nos toco de preservar algo, de lo mucho que hemos perdido, para las proximas generaciones."

Morocco.Bouchafra Abdeslam ( of SPANA écrit: "Je vous remercie des efforts déployés pour l'organisation de la JMZ2004 et la mobilisation des différents partenaires. La SPANA compte cette année préparer des manifestations (birdwaching, exposés, expositions sur les thèmes choisis, etc.) dans quatre centres éducatifs situés approximité des zones humides (Tanger, Rabat, Marrakech et Chemaia)." Son rapport ici(avec une image de l'affiche WWD du Secrétariat Ramsar, traduis en arabe!).

Myanmar. Mr. Nyein Chan ( wrotes that the Myanmar Bird & Nature Society participated an Environmental Education Booth at Myanmar Floriculturist association's 10th Anniversary in People's Park & Square and used the opportunity to display the World Wetlands Day poster and other materials. Consideration is being given to producing the Ramsar poster in Myanmar language (Burmese).

Namibia I.Jonathan Wilsnach ( of the Erongo Young Environmentalists "EYE" in Narraville by Walvis Bay, writes: "we are also celebrating World Wetlands Day on the 2nd. We have a regional competition yearly about our Ramsar site, and we will keep you posted about events."

Namibia II.Uatjavi Uanivi (, Ministry of Environment and Tourism, Directorate Scientific Services, writes: "We are planning to hold quizzes with high schools in Windhoek for the World Wetland Day, and for that we would need to compile a resource book for the schools as preparation for the competition. We would also like to distribute WWD posters, stickers and pamphlets." Here are two brief reports in PDF format, World Wetlands Day 2004 and World Wetlands Day - World Water Day Joint Commemoration at Hardap Dam.

Nepal I. Sameer Karki ( of IUCN Nepal writes: "Please find attached a list of events planned to celebrate World Wetlands Day 2004 in Nepal that we are aware of. We do not, obviously, know all the events that have been planned!"

Nepal II.Rabin Bastola, Coordinator of the Nepal River Conservation Trust (NRCT)( in Kathmandu, writes "We would like to inform you that we are planning to organize Annual River Festival in the last weekend of the Feb. 2004. We will distribute these materials in this program as well." ["Save the Karnali as Himalayan River Heritage"]

New Zealand I.Lynda Neame (, Regional Policy Analyst, Marlborough District Council in Blenheim, writes: "Hi there Valerie. Here in Marlborough we are very keen to observe WWD. A couple of years ago we marked the day with a dawn ceremony at one of our largest wetlands - the Grovetown Lagoon. We are currently working on a community project to upgrade and enhance the Lagoon. I would like to have another ceremony and celebration for this next year and see WWD as the ideal time. Of course we have other wetlands, and farmers, grape growers and wineries are all interested parties here. I would like to receive the CD-ROM for the poster, leaflet and sticker. Could I also have a hard copy of each. I see that these products are financially funded by the Danone Group, but we are happy to pay for any costs involved."

New Zealand II.Mary Trayes (, West Coast Regional Council in Greymouth, writes: "Hi Valerie. Please find attached a copy of our report from WWDay for the central West Coast (also celebrated at Haast with DOC staff on the Sat before). Rained first thing but by mid-afternoon really hot and sultry. Pic and short article on the Nutrients Runoff project in paper (Grey Star) next day and a fuller spiel in this week's WC Messenger (weekly advertiser)." Here's the brief report.

New Zealand III. See United States VI, Paula Loader.

New Zealand IV.Graham Ford ( of Fish and Game New Zealand writes: "A nationwide series of events is taking place in early February to mark World Wetland's Day (WWD). Fish & Game New Zealand, the lead agency for New Zealand's WWD, today announced the events and activities taking place around the country. They include open days at wetlands, bus tours of wetlands, displays, speakers on wetland issues and management and in Southland a huge 'plant-a-thon' with 600 trees being planted by the Waiau Trust at the Rakatu wetland." Here is New Zealand's full list.

New Zealand V.John Carter (, ranger: education & learning, Dept of Conservation in Te Anau, writes: "Hello Dwight. The Department of Conservation Te Anau Area Office's Visitor Centre Staff have made a beautiful display and have created an activity pack for families to explore their local wetlands with: Includes net, invertebrate ID chart and resources so the information gleaned can join a NZ database which monitors the state of the nation's waterways. Getting the Wetland Message OUT THERE!"

Nicaragua I. Martín Lezama ( está escribiendo: "En coordinación con el Ministerio del Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (MARENA), el focal Ramsar, Milton Camacho el Grupo de Trabajo en Humedales (GTH-NI) estrá celebrando durante el mes de febrero una serie de eventos que inician con la inauguración de los rótulos de los sitios Laguna de Tisma y humedales de San Miguelito el 2 de febrero." Más.

Nicaragua II.Lic. Franklin A. Briceño (, Miembro de Fundacion del Rio y del GTH - Nic., está escribiendo: "Desde san Miguelito, departamento de Rio San Juan, Nicaragua; Sitio Ramsar No. 1140, les estamos enviando nuestro plan de actividades que estamos desdarrollando en homenaje al 2 DE FEBRERO DIA MUNDIAL DE LOS HUMEDALES." Aqui.

Nigeria.Fasasi Adewale ( writes that the students of the Marine Biology and Fisheries Department, Faculty of Science, University of Lagos, are planning a WWD celebration.

Panama.Eric Flores, GITEC Panamá (, writes: For WWD 2004, "the local environmental groups: GITEC, Panama Verde and ODESCA have agreed to develop of a joint activity with young people from Colleges within the Santa Maria River Watershed perimeter. It is the most important watershed in central Panama, due to the community water supplies, agricultural, industrial and recreational activities, all these related with the watershed status. The specific objectives are to: 1- To motivate young people in the vital importance of the Santa Maria River Watershed and their participation to the local community development. 2- To build capacity about the importance of management and landscape planning to watershed level. 3- To build capacity about the good practices in management of biodiversity and the water resources in the Santa Maria River Watershed. Participants will be college students from Alto de Piedra, Atalaya, Santa Maria, Parita and Sona." It's to be held at Alto de Piedra College, Santa Fe District, Veraguas Province. Here is the report (Español).

Paraguay I. Lic. Francesca Hammann de Cabrera (, Programas de CECoP, Fundación Desdel Chaco (, Asunción, está escribiendo: "En vista de los buenos resultados del año pasado con las giras de concienciación y producción de materiales, quisiéramos pedir los siguientes materiales para conmemorar el año de agua en el Chaco Paraguayo, y en el país en general. También quisiéramos pedir la versión en Quark Express para los afiches y stickers para adaptación en los idiomas pertinentes."

Paraguay II. Lic. Levi Hiebert Funk (, Programas de CECoP, Fundación Desdel Chaco (, está escribiendo: "En esta semana tengo un taller de concienciación en la zona de las lagunas saladas con 15 profesores. Ellos reciben las herramientas para aplicar el CICLO DE LA INDAGACIÓN mediante la metodología aplicada de la EEPE y van a iniciar en este año con sus propios proyectos en sus colegios. En la semana pasada enviamos por mail un nuevo afiche para el Día Mundial de Humedales de la Fundación DeSdel Chaco Paraguay". Here's an image of the beautiful new poster.

Paraguay III.Danilo A. Salas-Dueñas (, Coordinador Comité Nacional de Humedales, Fundación Moisés Bertoni, Asunción, está escribiendo: "Dentro de las actividades realizadas con motivo del Día Mundial de los Humedales, el COMITÉ NACIONAL DE HUMEDALES realizó diversas actividades." Informe.

Peru I. Equipo del Centro Mallku - Perú ( ) está escribiendo: "Reciba cordiales saludos, realmente muy necesario resaltar el trabajo que realizan los humedales por nosotros, en especial reconocemos el valioso trabajo por el DMH, colaborando a esta iniciativa mundial, tambien venimos preparando algunas actividades con jovenes y autoridades de las zonas altoandinas de Tacna y Puno en el sur del Peru."

Peru II. Carlos Franco Pacheco (, Coordinador Lima, Foro Ecológico del Perú (, está escribiendo: "En el marco de la Conmemoración por el Día Mundial de los Humedales celebrado el día 02 de Febrero del presente año, el Foro Ecológico del Perú, con el apoyo de la Universidad Científica del Sur, el Colegio de Biólogos del Perú, el Patronato del Parque de Las Leyendas, el Museo de Historia Natural, el Instituto Ambientalista Natura, ACOREMA y la Red de Vida-Amigos de la Naturaleza organizan el Día Mundial de los Humedales en el Auditorio del Foro Ecológico, el Conversatorio: "Política Nacional de Humedales: Evaluación y perspectivas", con la participación de destacados especialistas y personalidades de reconocida trayectoria en la investigación y defensa en la conservación de los humedales." Programa.

Peru III.Daniel Lovera Davila, Director del Instituto de Investigación de Geología (, está escribiendo: "En el Marco de la Conmemoración por el Dia Mundial de los Humedales ha celebrarse el día 2 de Febrero del presente año, la Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos a través del Instituto de Investigación de la Facultad de Ingeniería Geológica, Minera, Metalúrgica y Geográfica con el ímpetu de seguir capacitando en el uso, manejo y conservación de humedales como se concreto en el 2003 con la colaboración de Ramsar, organizará para este año académico el evento: "Programa de Manejo de Cuencas y Humedales Costeros" a realizarse en los meses de febrero, marzo y abril del presente año. Este programa tiene como objetivo de facilitar la información sobre cuencas y humedales a nivel internacional para que puedan tomarse en cuenta en los Planes de Desarrollo Local, Regional y Nacional que venimos trabajando en el Perú."

Peru IV. "Señores, Saludos por el día mundial de los humedales. Conmemorando el Día Mundial de los Humedales, un saludo desde el Perú" (Pantanos de Villa, Lima;

Peru V. Pilar Padilla (, Coordinadora Planeamiento, INRENA, está escribiendo: "Te escribo para adjuntarte un breve resumen de las actividades realizadas por algunos sitios Ramsar del Peru."

Philippines I. Eduardo M. Bisquera, Jr. (, Regional Technical Director, Protected Areas, Wildlife and Coastal Zone Management Service of DENR, Zamboanga City, writes: "Highlights of the celebrations includes the following: conducted an information campaign in 23 schools situated in the coastal areas; migratory waterfowl census in four critical wetland areas in region 9; an seminar-workshop for elementary teachers on wetland values / functions biodiversity education it includes bird watch / count, mangroves planting and eco-guided tour in mangrove areas at Talon-Talon / Mampang coastal zone and Pasonanca Natural Park; in Zamboanga City; conducted seminar for college students of Areneo on caving and actual cave assessment; multi-sectoral meeting for the protection and conservation of Sta. Cruz Islands Protected Landscape and Seascape led by the local government of Zamboanga City and coastal clean-up." A thorough and well-illustrated report is available here (1.2MB PDF).

Philippines II. Arleigh J. Adorable (, Regional Technical Director for Protected Areas, Wildlife and Coastal Zone Mgt. Service, DENR Region 10, writes: "Please be informed that part of the activities lined up by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Region 10, Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines, for the celebration of World Wetlands Day 2004 is the distribution of information materials to schools and communities near important wetland areas."

Philippines III. Jovito Layugan Jr. ( writes: "Please be informed that the following planned activities will be undertaken to include the hanging of streamers in conspicuous places, conduct of information dissemination in schools and communities particularly in places where there are wetlands. This aims to promote public awareness, participation and involvement among the general public in the protection and conservation efforts of our wetlands and its resources. This activity will be conducted in the form of fora, symposia and "dalaw-turo" (visit to teach) which will be supplemented by the distribution of flyers and leaflets, and other information materials. It is worth to mention that as a jumpstart activity, DENR R02 have formulated teams and started the conduct of the Annual Waterfowl Census for year 2004 within the priority wetland sites of the region to include Palaui Island of Sta. Ana, Cagayan, Buguey Lagoon of Buguey, Cagayan ( included in the Ramsar List ), Magat Dam of Ramon, Isabela, Pata Lake of Claveria, Cagayan, Carague Lake of Lemu, Enrile, Cagayan and Dicatian of Divilican, Isabela."

Philippines IV. Marlynn Mendoza ( writes from the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau - Department of Environment and Natural Resources: "The highlight of this year's World Wetlands Day, which also coincides with our National Wetlands Day celebration, is the awarding ceremonies for the Philippine Wetlands Conservation Award. The DENR Secretary, Elisea G. Gozun, will present the awards to 7 winners who were selected from 49 nominees nationwide. This pioneering activity intends to give recognition to individuals, local organizations and local government units who have contributed to the wise use of Philippine wetlands. This initiative was made possible through partnership with the business sector namely the San Miguel Corporation (major sponsor) and Unilever-Philippines."

Poland I.Ewa Jablonska ( of Warszawa writes : "I represent a Polish NGO: "Save Wetlands" Association. We are leading an educational project about wetlands now. The project is adressed to schools in Mazowiecki Landscape Park. Peatlands are a big part of area of this Park, thats why we decided to teach children, who live there, about wetlands." Here is her report.

Poland II. "This year WWD in Warta Mouth National Park had been celebrated from February 2nd to 14th. We had organized environmental workshops for schoolchildren "Why do we need wetlands?". As many as 14 schools from the WMNP nearby had participated. The aim of these meetings was to make kids aware of the wetlands' function, threat and the need of their protection. Since February 2nd a Piotr Kulak's drawings exhibition can be seen in WMNP headquarters. They have been created in last few years and they show an author's sense of humor in his wetland-connected topics presentation. We attach some drawings from the exhibition. (

Portugal I.Cristina Girão Vieira ( of the Instituto da Conservação da Natureza - Divisão de Informação e Divulgação writes that "we want to send a copy of the materials (in the original language) to each one of the Protected Areas managed by our Institute. After that, if they are interested and with their suggestions, we will try to produce the materials in Portuguese from the CD-ROM."

Portugal II.Teresa Lemos, Associação PATO ( in Caldas da Rainha, writes: "I'm writing from Paul de Tornada (Tornada Marsh), one of the Portuguese Wetlands of International Importance. As last year, we are planning activities with local schools. These activities, which will happen during all February, will include an exposition on our Ecological and Educational Centre, guided visits to the Tornada Marsh, and activities in the schools. Due to the fact that there are so many young people involved, we would appreciate that you send us as much as you can of the following material, specially stickers, so we can offer them to almost every student.

Romania I.Liviu-Daniel Galatchi ( writes: "I am a Lecturer at the Faculty of Natural Sciences, Ovidius University, in Constanta. We are planning to organize in our university the Wetlands Celebration Day on February 2nd. This is why, hearing about your offer, we would like to ask you to send us the WWD materials in English or in French. I should also mention that the materials are going to be used by our students (around 700 students in Biology, Ecology, Agriculture and Geography)."

Romania II.Cornelia Aftodor (, Ecological Education and International Relations Department, Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve Authority, writes: "Herewith the Danube Delta Biosphere Reserve Authority Tulcea (Romania) is very pleased to report the programme of activities organised for the celebration of the environmental event World Wetlands Day on 2nd February 2004." The report, with great pictures of the kids.

Serbia and Montenegro I.Boris Erg (berg@eunet.yu) of the NGO "Plavi Dunav" says that the "main objective of our projects is promotion and restoration of Special nature reserve 'Gornje Podunavlje', which is the most important wetland in S&M, just across from the Nature park 'Kopacki rit' and south from National park 'Danube-Drava'. I am also the nature protection manager in Forest estate 'Sombor' which is manager of this protected asset. We are very interested to organize some kind of event on 2 February, both as an NGO and as a Managers' enterprise. As NGO 'Plavi Dunav' we developed transborder cooperation with NGOs from Croatia (Tibor Mikuska's Prijatelji Kopackog rita) and Hungary (BITE Baja). We did 'Danube floodplain leaflet', a project supported by WWF. I hope that SRP "Gornje Podunavlje" will became Ramsar Site in the near future. In that sense, we are very interested for all kind of materials that is available from Ramsar Bureau."

Serbia and Montenegro II.Natasa Panic, PR Manager, Department for Education and Communication (nature@net.yu), writes: "The Institute for Nature Conservation for Serbia ( has been organizing promotional events for WWD since the beginning of the initiative. For this year, we plan to organize two events. One is a working meeting with representatives of all institutions involved in implementation of Ramsar Convention and managers of the Ramsar sites in Serbia in aim to improve action coordination and agree on future wetland conservation and development Strategy that will lead toward sustainability of these areas. On the WWD (2 February) will be held Promotion for wider circle of public where will be presented: -importance for implementation of Ramsar Convention, -results and conclusions of the meeting, -designated Ramsar sites in our country and sites that are in nomination process. On the occasion, there will be organized a visit for participants to one of the sites that is on national nomination list near the Novi Sad city where events will take place. On the WWD 2004 Presentation, we expect about 70 participants (representatives of Government organizations, NGO's, local authorities, scientific and academic institutions, wetland managers, Medias and local people that living in near Ramsar sites)." Here is the report by Oliver Fojkar, with photographs.

Seychelles. Following WWD in the Seychelles, a "pre-accession workshop" was held, 5-7 February 2004, to assist that nation in preparing to join the Ramsar Convention, with the participation of Abou Bamba, Senior Advisor for Africa, and Jean Paul Paddack, head of the WWF Madagascar and West Indian Ocean Programme Office, and financial support from the Ramsar Secretariat through the Swiss Grant for Africa. Here is some of the press reporting on the results.

Slovak Republic I. Lucia Bobáková ( writes: "On the occasion of World Wetland Day we would like to prepare an exhibition on wetlands, to be displayed at the information centre of the Muranska planina National park in the village of Muran. The exhibition will be opened on Febr. 2, 2004 and last till the end of the month. Based on our experience, it is expected that approximately 500-600 school children will visit the exhibition. Presentations on wetlands for the elementary schools will also be given during the exhibition. We will send a report on this activity to you after it finishes."

Slovak Republic II. Monika Kovacova (, DEF Secretariat in Bratislava, writes: "On behalf of the Danube Environmental Forum - the Danube Basin wide platform of environmental non-governmental organisations focused on the protection of water and wetland ecosystems, I kindly ask you for the World Wetlands Day materials in English and also in Spanish language. We would like to help with the dissemination of these materials around the Danube Basin to encourage and enable its translation into as many Danube languages as possible and also to motivate NGOs to get involved in the celebration of the WWD 2004."

Slovenia. Stanka Desnik ( ) reports that "NGO Tabrih from Vescica has organised a friendly Sunday afternoon at river Mura with more than 130 people. We have walked through the wetland area beside the river Mura and across the frozen old river branches / berek. This part of the Mura wetland is on the border with Croatia, so we met the Croatian people at the river cross - Hotiza river-ferry. We have discussed about the border, which should be changed in new Europe, and about the nature protection act. On the Croatian side, the river Mura with wetlands is already protected; in Slovenia discussion about Natura 2000 is in progress. The number of walkers each year is bigger and shows that more and more people like wetlands, so we hope that also the state interest for Protection will be in big enough. You can visit also our website ." Excellent photos here.

Slovenia follow-up. "Dear all, The "wetland" month February is over, so are we from NGO Tabrih reporting from another action, that we have made. In the biggest city at river Mura, Murska Sobota, have we prepared small exhibition in a shop window from the Fering enterprise, which is on the main street. In the shop window we have put pictures and books from the Mura, a model from the swimming mill, stone-gravel from the river, dried plants from wetland and different frog species from plaster. The period of exhibition was from 31.1.2004 - 28.2.2004. We hope that some people have understood our message. There are some photos from the exhibition in a shop window. Kind regards from Stanka Desnik, landscape architect, NGO Tabrih."

South Africa I. Elizabeth Martens (, Wildlife & Environment Society of South Africa, SADC Regional Environmental Education Centre in Howick, writes: "The Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa is interested in gaining acess to the 2004 poster and leaflet (CD Rom) developed by Ramsar. As a contracted project of Working for Water, we produced an 8-page booklet for WWD 2002, 'Water, Life and Culture', and are hoping to do something again for WWD 2004. Our thoughts are to adapt the booklet we produced in 2002 as well as develop a poster. If we are able to use and possibly adapt the poster produced for Ramsar, that would be most helpful."

South Africa II. Vanessa Bolters (, Education Coordinator, writes: "The MTN ScienCentre in Cape Town, South Africa, will be participating in World Wetland Week 2004. We normally sponsor 200 learners to visit our ScienCentre to participate in our programme.The provisional programme will include a guided tour at Intaka Island (Blouvlei). This wetland is made up of a constructed section which purifies sewage water through a system of four ponds and an undisturbed section made up of seasonal wetlands or 'pans', and Sand Plain Fynbos. At the ScienCentre, learners will engage in worksheets on wetlands and attend a video presentation on Catchments. I would appreciate it if you could assist me with all the wetland resources that are available, as we will be distributing it to our visiting schools during the World Wetland Week - 2 to 7 February 2004."

South Africa III. Koma Moloto ( of the Environment Department of the Duvha Power Station, Witbank, writes that environmental awareness raising activities using Ramsar materials are being organized for the station's 900 employees and other stakeholders.

Spain I.Vicente Sancho Alcayde of RONCADELL (, in Benimámet-Valencia está escribiendo: "Somos una ONG de Valencia, y el presente año queremos realizar algunos actos conmemorativos en el Dia Mundial de los Humedales, como ya hicimos en 2002. Realizaremos una serie de charlas destinadas a estudiantes sobre el tema de los humedales valencianos, complementado con una excursión a una zona húmeda litoral de Valencia."

Spain II. Julián Mª Cano Villanueva ( writes from Chiclana (Cadiz): "Como años atrás os solicitó material (carteles, pegatinas e información) para seguir celebrando en el IES Poeta García Gutiérrez de Chiclana el día mundial de los humedales. Estamos convencidos de que se trata de una labor importante que debe conocer la gente de la calle y qué mejor que un centro de enseñanza." Informe.

Spain III.Biblioteca Thos i Codina ( in Barcelona está escribiendo: "Somos una biblioteca humilde que nos interesamos mucho por la naturaleza. Como es sabido por ustedes el 2 de febrero se celebra el día mundial de los humedales y en nuestra biblioteca queremos celebrar este día. Buscando información en internet sobre este día he encontrado su página y he observado que ustedes tienen material sobre este tema."

Spain IV.Alicia Marín (, Jefa, Departamento de Servicios Ambientales, Delegación Provincial de la Consejería de Medio Ambiente, Sevilla, está escribiendo: "El día mundial de los humedales, lo celebramos llevando escolares procedentes de la localidad más cercanaa las lagunas de Calderón Chica y La Ballestera, ambas protegidas como Reservas Naturales. Monitores ambientales especializados les explicaron a los niños los valores ecológicos de estos humedales. Nuestra intención ha sido sensibilizar a la población del gran valor que tienen estos ecosistemas. La actividad fue recogida en video por la televisión local y se pasó en hora de máxima audiencia, logrando así llegar a la mayoría de los habitantes de un pueblo agrícola que no conocía hasta el momento la gran función medioambiental que cumplen los humedales."

Spain V. Núria Valverde Costa (, Tècnic d'Ús Públic del Parc Natural de ses Salines d'Eivissa i Formentera, writes from Ibiza: "Benvolguda Montserrat, Gràcies per l'enviament de material. Va arribar a temps, i a més en tenim per a deixar als Instituts i Escoles. Us enviem les notes de premsa que van sortir als diaris locals i algunes fotos. Vam realitzar un itinerari interpretatiu als estanys de ses Salines, i es va publicitar a través de l'agenda d'activitats del parc. Gràcies per tot." Fotos.

Spain VI.Juan A. Tomé Cruz ( in Moaña Pontevedra está escribiendo: "Me dirijo a ustedes como miembro del colectivo ecologista Luita Verde, entidad sin animo de lucro dedicada al estudio y defensa del patrimonio natural. Nuestro colectivo pretende este año organizar, como ya lo hicieramos en el 2001 unas jornadas dedicadas a la defensa de los humedales y decidimos solicitarles material divulgativo para ofrecer a los participantes. . . . Les envio un archivo adjunto con una foto realizada en las jornadas celebradas en el 2001 entorno al espacio natural de la ensenada de San Simón un humedal situado en el fondo de la ría de Vigo en Galicia, incluido en la propuesta Gallega de espacios para la Red Natura y esperamos que futura zona Ramsar."

Spain VII.Juan Carlos Aranda López ( está escribiendo: "Un año más el Ayuntamiento de Elche, a través de su Concejalía de Medio Ambiente, se suma a esta iniciativa auspiciada por la oficina internacional de la Convención de RAMSAR, a través de la organización de una serie de actividades destinada a toda la familia (los menores deben venir acompañados por adulto responsable), a desarrollar en las instalaciones municipales de la Estación Biológica del Clot de Galvany." Programa de actividades Día Mundial de los Humedales, 7 y 8 de febrero de 2004.

Spain VIII. "Con motivo de la celebración,del Día Mundial de los Humedales, el Grupo de Sevilla de WWF/Adena va a realizar diversas actividades en los días previos a la misma y que culmi-narán con una visita y una ruta ornitológica a las lagunas de Bonanza y Santa Teresa (Sanlúcar de Barrameda), en el Parque Natural de Doñana. Para más información: Juanjo Carmona. Oficina en Doñana de WWF/Adena. Tel: 617 281 809. Mail:"

Spain IX.Juan José Aja, Reserva Natural de Las Marisma de Santoña y Noja, está escribiendo: "Seguidamente le informo de lag actividades desarrollas el Día 2 de Febrero del 2004, con motivo del Día Mundial de Los Humedales, en la Reserva Natural de las Marismas de Santoña y Noja, Cantabria. Se llevó acabo la colocación de una placa conmemorativa a este acto, donde se dieron cita a un grope de alumnos del Colegio Público Macias Picavea, de Santoña, recibiendo una pequeña charla sobre la importancia de log Humedales y su Conservación." Informe.

Spain X. Mª Teresa Prieto Dobón (, Sección de Espacios Protegidos y Vida Silvestre, Servicio del Medio Natural, Servicios Provinciales de Medio Ambiente, está escribiendo: "Como responsable del Área de Educación Ambiental en la Provincia de Cuenca, me dirijo a usted para informarle de las actividades llevadas a cabo con motivo del día de los Humedales a petición de mi colega Ruth Delgado, Directora-Conservadora de las lagunas de El Hito y Manjavacas. Se organizaron visitas guiadas a las dos lagunas citadas. Se seleccionaron como destinatarios de las actividades a los niños de las localidades cercanas a la laguna, con el fin de realizar una labor de concienciación de la población local sobre los valores naturales de su entorno natural inmediato, de modo que se sientan responsables de su conservación. . . . Adjunto le remito algunas fotos de ese día."

Sri Lanka.Winston De Silva (, President of Saviya Development Foundation, writes: "We wish to bring to your kind notice of our proposed program to commemorate the World Wetland Day 2004. Our intended program: Art, Posters and Essay competition among school children on Madu Ganga Wetlands and Wetlands in Sri Lanka; Photograpic Exhibition on Wetlands by Schoolchildren in the Galle District; Awareness programs in 10 selected schools, to enhance knowledge on wetlands."

St Maarten.Natalia Collier (, Executive Director, Environmental Protection In the Caribbean (EPIC, in Florida, USA, writes that "Our organization sponsored an art contest for children ages 5-18 on the Dutch side of the island of St. Maarten in the Caribbean. Over 130 entries were received from 5 schools. Winners received a wetlands poster and certificate of recognition. In addition, presentations were made at a number of schools regarding the importance of wetlands and more are planned. This event resulted in 3 newspaper articles and one newspaper centerpiece with the children's art."

Sweden. Ann Wahlström (, Aquatic Environment Section, Natural Resources Department, Swedish Environmental Protection Agency, writes: "Since most of the wetlands in Sweden are normally covered with snow and ice in February, we would like to modify some of the material for use later in spring. We are planning to translate the text in the brochure into Swedish. Perhaps we may also want to make other modifications to suit our information efforts in spring, such as excluding the date of WWD - is that OK?"

Switzerland I.Alain Barbalat ( de Nos Oiseaux écrit sur la Journée lémanique: "Nos Oiseaux, la Ligue pour la protection des oiseaux, et l’Association pour la sauvegarde du Léman proposent une journée d’observation des oiseaux autour du lac Léman le dimanche 1er février 2004. Cette journée a pour but de sensibiliser le public aux oiseaux hivernants sur le Léman et de faire connaître les différents associations qui oeuvrent pour leur sauvegarde. Nous avons commencé dès l'été à prendre les contacts avec les ornithologues de la région afin de leur demander de tenir un poste le dimanche 1er février au bord du lac. Au total c'est donc 15 postes qui seront tenus ce jour là autour du Léman, le détail se trouve aussi sur le site de Nos Oiseaux". Here's the report by Sandra Hails and Estelle Gironnet of the Ramsar Secretariat's participation in this group excursion on the shores of Lake Geneva (Lac Léman).

Switzerland II. Ramsar's Tobias Salathé reports: "Radio Suisse Romande la 1ère consacrera son émission "magazine météo" de samedi 31 janvier entre 08h30 et 09h00 au sujet de la "Journée mondiale sur les zones humides". François Benedetti, en charge de l'émission, mettra des informations sur la JMZH et les zones humides ainsi que des liens vers notre site web au service du grand public sur son site Internet et instruira ceux qui veulent écouter l'émission avec les propos sur les zones humides, leur fonctions et valeurs et les sites Ramsar en Suisse de la part de votre humble serviteur soussigné."

Switzerland III.Estelle Gironnet ( of the Ramsar Secretariat and members of the Club Alpin Suisse (CAS) notes that: "Cette année, le thème retenu est "De la montagne à la mer, les zones humides travaillent pour nous", et la CAS de la Dôle s'associe à cet évènement en vous conviant à participer à une sortie sur la réserve naturelle du Lac de Tanay en compagnie de représentants de la Convention Ramsar et de Pro Natura Valais (à confirmer)." This WWD event will actually take place on 8 May 2004.

Switzerland IV.François Turrian (, Vice- directeur, ASPO/BirdLife Suisse, écrit: "L'ASPO/BirdLife Suisse a fêté la journée mondiale des zones humides. Dimanche, une excusion a été organisée depuis Centre-nature ASPO de la Sauge ( dans le site Ramsar du Bas-Lac de Neuchâtel, en présence de 23 participants. L'occasion d'admirer de nombreux oiseaux d'eau mais aussi une famille de sangliers à la recherche de sa nourriture dans le marais. La cassette vidéo Ramsar a également été diffusée à cette occasion. La prochaine action aura lieu samedi au centre-nature ASPO de La Sauge: conférence de presse et manifestation symbolique en vue de la conservation de la zone humide de Saemangeum, en Corée."

Thailand I. Ms Nirawan Pipitsombat (, Senior Environmental Officer, National Resources & Environmental Management Division, Office of Environmental Policy and Planning, has sent a brief report with some very nice photographs of WWD activities around the Thale Noi Wildlife Non - hunting Area, the Bung Khong Long Non - Hunting Area in Nong Khai province, and the Songkhram River in Nakhon Phanom province. Click here.

Thailand II. See International: Mekong River Basin, above.

Togo. Dr EBEH Adayade Kodjo (, Executive Director, NGO ANCE/TOGO, Lomé, écrit: "Ce qui est choquant est qu'au Togo, les mangroves ne sont pas protégées, il n'existe aucune réglementation spécifique pour leur exploitation. Zones écologiquement très importante, le pire est à redouter si rien n'est fait dans l'immédiat. C'est pour cette raison que, le 02 février 2004, lors de la journée internationale des zones humides, l'ONG ANCE/TOGO a organisée plusieurs activités de sensibilisation et d'information le long du chenal de Gbaga (zone des mangroves togolaise) pour amener les populations riveraines à une prise de conscience pour éviter une catastrophe écologique grave à notre pays." Les photos.

Trinidad and Tobago I.Angela Ramsey (, Wildlife Biologist, Department of Natural Resources & the Environment in Scarborough, Tobago W.I., writes that lectures and distributions of WWD materials are planned in approximately 20 secondary schools, 25 primary schools ,and 20 community organizations.

Trinidad and Tobago II.Susan Shurland-Maharaj (, Public Relations/Information Officer with the Institute of Marine Affairs ( in Carenage, Trinidad, "'From the mountains to the sea, wetlands at work for us' is so appropriate as we in Trinidad and Tobago try to educate people about the value of our mountains and forests and the impact of negative activities there on our coastal wetlands. We stress the importance of our wetlands to our nation - why we need wetlands for food and fishing, tourism, recreation, maintaining the ecosystem balance, etc. - and that destroying it by clearing and polluting will do more harm than good. Your stickers are always very well received by primary school students. . . . I have passed the package to our educators and our wetlands ecologist is working on a feature on the Caroni Swamp, our second largest wetland (after Nariva, which is on the Ramsar list). Caroni Swamp and its river basin is the focus of one of the IMA’s multi-disciplinary projects for 2004. This wetland is affected by runoff from the nearby Northern Range in Trinidad." Here is her report afterwards, with an article submitted to the local newspaper.

Trinidad and Tobago III.Nadra Nathai-Gyan, Wildlife Section (, Forestry Division, writes: "A brief note from the Ramsar Focal Point in Trinidad about our celebration this year: On WWD, the Wildlife Section, Forestry Division and the National Wetlands Committee will host an educational seminar on the theme particularly targeted for our Forms 5&6 students (15-18 years category). Resource personnel will include our University, Forestry Division, Institute of Marine Affairs, Environmental Management Authority and the Pointe-a-Pierre Wildlfowl Trust. The Honourable Minister of Public Utilities and the Environment will launch the Seminar. We expect to have about 250 persons in attendance and it will be held at our Caroni Swamp Visitor Facility. We expect it to be a roaring success." Here is Nadra's report, with photos of Minister P. Beckles and the unveiling of a new poster.

Turkey I.Selim Erdogan (, hydrogeologist with Nature Conservation and National Parks, Ministry of the Environment in Ankara, writes: "Greetings from Turkey and Turkish Wetlands Division staff. Just like last year, we want to produce Turkish versions of the Bureau's materials. Could you please send me them in Quark Express format?" He notes that "We'll be able to organize WWD as soon as 12-13 February (we'll spend 2 days), because this year 2 February matches with a religious holiday and in order to prevent low participation, we developed such a solution."

Turkey II.Serhan Cagirankaya (, writes: "Dear Peck Dwight; Greetings from Turkey. Here is our report about World Wetlands Day activities in Turkey. Also you can find some photos about our events in attachment. 'Turkey celebrated the World Wetlands Day on 13-14 February 2004 at Fethiye/Mugla with collaboration of Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MOEF), Municipality of Fethiye, WWF-Turkey and FETAV (Local NGO), with many events. The day didn't take place on 2 February 2004 because this day was coincided with the second day of Religious Fest in Turkey. About 250 participants from different disciplines such as local people (hunters, students, etc.), both national and local NGOs, relevant institutions, universities.'" Here it is.

Uganda I.Elungat Solomon (, Plan Uganda-Tororo, writes: "I am working with an NGO in natural resource management and we are to celebrate the wetlands day on 26 of February, not on 2 February, due to some financial delays. I intend to distribute the requested materials to the community groups on that day."

Uganda II. The Government of Uganda, specifically the Wetlands Inspection Division of the Ministry of Lands, Water and Environment, held WWD celebrations on 12 March instead of 2 February in order to synchronize the affair with the visit of a Ramsar team in advance of the Ramsar COP9 to be held in Kampala in 2005. Here are the pix.

Ukraine. The Ministry of Environment Protection and Wetlands International Black Sea Programme have collaborated on a number of activities for WWD, including a press conference by Minister Mr. Sergiy Polyakov taking place at the Ministry on 2 February at 12.00 hrs, with the participation of Deputy Minister Dr. Anatoliy Grytsenko, Head of Department Dr. Yaroslav Movchan, First Deputy Head of State Agency for Protected Areas Mr. Mykola Stetsenko, and Coordinator of Wetlands International Black Sea Programme Dr. Vasyl Kostuyshin. A press release was distributed on the "Formation of a National Ecological Network" and the preparation of management plans for Ramsar Sites and other wetlands and the intention announced to designate a further 11 Ramsar Sites. More details here, and a picture of the WWD calendar.

United Kingdom I.Justin Taberham(, Director of Policy at CIWEM, writes that "Wetlands: Policy into Action" is the name of a professional conference scheduled for London for World Wetlands Day, 2-3 February 2004. Sponsored by CIWEM and organized by CMS-Coastal Management for Sustainability, the meeting will include speakers from RSPB, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust (WWT), WWF-UK, English Nature and the National Trust, among others. Following a guided tour on WWD of the WWT's London Wetland Centre in Barnes and a reception in the evening supported by WWF-UK, the conference on the 3rd will consist of three sessions -- Policy Development and Practice, The State of Wetlands, and Good Practice Case Studies - and include the bestowing of the 2004 RSPB/CIWEM Living Wetlands Award. Here is a reprint of the CIWEM's announcement and registration form.

United Kingdom II.Rachael Miller (, Events Ranger with the Broads Authority, sent this notice for the public: “On Monday 2 February 2004 the Broads Authority is offering a choice of two special guided tours to important wetland areas in the Broads to celebrate the anniversary of the signing of the International Convention on Wetlands. Choose to visit beautiful Hardley Flood near Loddon in the Chet Valley, an important Ramsar site as it provides an essential wintering ground for thousands of wildfowl. Join a Broads Authority Ranger to explore this area with a 6-mile circular walk not normally open to the public. Or take a tour of the Bure Marshes Ramsar site, an important reedbed and marshland habitat home to many rare birds. The Broads Authority Ranger for this area will be leading a 2 to 3 mile guided walk. Although nationally and internationally important, the Broads is only one of the many areas protected by the Ramsar convention. Every year more than 80 countries around the world take part in World Wetlands Day.”

United Kingdom III.Sue Perry ( writes that "recently at Benenden School [in Cranbrook, Kent] we have launched a project to restore our lake and many ponds in our grounds. Through the Salter-Nufield A level Biology course, which has a whole section on such issues, we are going to do a presentation to the whole school on such issues. We will certainly email some pictures through for our activities. We are aiming to put an environment week together for the whole school with World Wetlands Day as a focus for 2005."

United Kingdom IV. Tracey Spensley (, Marketing Communications Manager with WWF-UK at Panda House, Godalming in Surrey, writes: We "have been reviewing the Ramsar Web site in preparation for some local initiatives which we are hoping to arrange here in the UK to celebrate World Wetlands Day 2004. It would be great to have some additional copies of the WWD poster, leaflet and sticker."

United Kingdom V.Susan Porter (, Education and Events Officer at The Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust in Slimbridge (, writes: "We are planning our events for World Wetlands Day 2004 so as to run over the weekend before and on the Monday. Please would it be possible to have some materials for our celebrations. . . . Also could I put a request in for some of the older WWD materials, the Ramsar site brochure and information packs and if possible a copy of the video as well. We have a visitor centre with a large cinema in which I would like to show the video."

United Kingdom VI. Natasha Barker (, Exe Estuary Officer with the Exe Estuary Management Partnership ( in Exeter, writes: "The Exe Estuary Partnership will be marking WWD with the new partners involved in the EC Interreg IIIb programme project 'Cycleau' with French and Irish partners."

United Kingdom VII. Neil Watson ( of Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust - Washington, Tyne & Wear, writes: "At WWT Washington we will celebrate World Wetlands Day with free admission on Sunday 1 February and Monday 2 February. On Sunday visitors can help to restore a pond which has gone into succession and become overgrown with Willow and Alder. While the adults are busy with this task, the children can get involved in craft activities with a Dragonfly theme. On WWD itself Dean Heward, WWT's Wetlands Programmes Officer, will deliver an evening talk on the ecology and behaviour of Dragonflies, followed by Members Question Time. Members of staff will be on hand to answer any questions members may have about WWT and its involvement in World Wetlands conservation. Visit for details."

United Kingdom VIII.Lynn Parr (, Technical Editor, English Nature, writes that a series of publications were launched in London on World Wetlands Day which embody the 44 reports of the four-year "Conserving Natura 2000 Rivers" project on conserving freshwater species of European importance, which are available free of charge in hard copy or CD-ROM and for downloading. Here is her announcement.

United Kingdom: Guernsey.Pragnell, Ellen (, Projects Officer (Environment), States of Guernsey Board of Administration in St Peter Port, writes: "I am currently arranging to announce through our local media the proposed boundaries of Guernsey's planned Ramsar site on World Wetlands Day. In support, I also intend to put on a display at our local library regarding the proposed Ramsar site and the Convention in general. If it's not too late, I should be very grateful if you would send me the WWD resources in English." Here is the media release on the proposed new Ramsar site.

United Kingdom: Jersey I.Pete Double (, Awareness Officer in the Environment Department at St Helier, writes that he is "producing a special 'Wetlands' edition of our environment magazine 'Planet Jersey' along with our week of events so any ready-made illustrations / artwork would be very useful."

United Kingdom: Jersey II.Jon Horn ( of the National Trust for Jersey writes: "Next year will be our first year in Jersey celebrating WWD and we have provisionally organised a busy week in early February, but we could do with a guiding hand so we would be most grateful if you could send us a copy in both English, French and Spanish of each of the Ramsar WWD poster, leaflet and sticker. We have many French and Spanish visitors. . . . Thanks for your advice -- we have contacted Pete Double from The States of Jersey and we are coordinating our list, report and events in conjunction with him. We would be delighted to inform you as to our activities for the day and as to their success in the future."

United Kingdom: Northern Ireland I.Siobhan Lanigan O'Keeffe (, Community Environmental Education Officer, Lisburn City Council, writes that "The Ulster Wildlife Trust in the Lisburn area are planning an event to raise awareness for WWD2004 and the Ramsar WWD materials would be extremely useful".

United Kingdom: Northern Ireland II.Stephanie Sim-Doran (, Media and Events Officer for RSPB in Belfast, writes: "The RSPB Northern Ireland doesn't simply do WWD, we do World Wetlands MONTH. We remind people in all the work we do of the importance of our wetlands and keeping it wet. We will be holding at least one event in February and possibly even more".

United Kingdom: Scotland I. Brian Morrell (, Learning Manager at The Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust's Caerlaverock Wetlands Centre, writes that "We are celebrating WWD by opening our centre free to visitors on Sunday 1st and Monday 2nd February with special WWD guided walks over the spectacular wetland reserve."

United Kingdom: Scotland II.Steven Dora (, Scottish Executive Environment Group, Wildlife and Habitats Division (Protected Areas Team), writes: "Please find attached pictures of the Scottish Executive's display in Victoria Quay to promote World Wetlands Day which attracted a great deal of attention. The display was created in conjunction with an e-mail which was sent to all Scottish Executive staff in St. Andrews House, Victoria Quay, Pentland House and Saughton House here in Edinburgh. This announced World Wetlands Day, invited colleagues to visit the display, and included a link to the World Wetlands Day 2004 Index Page. We are very glad to support World Wetlands Day and look forward to the next one." Click here.

United Kingdom: Wales. Trystan Pritchard, Public Relations Officer for the Countryside Council For Wales, has sent two press releases concerning WWD at Cors Caron in Ceredigion and at The Gwent Levels Wetland Reserve. Here they are.

United States I. Harry Spanglet (, Environmental Scientist with the California Department of Water Resources, writes that he intends to use the Convention's WWD posters for the state's educational activites about water and in science activities in his children's schools as well.

United States II.John Bragg (, Coastal Training Coordinator for the South Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve in Charleston, Oregon (, writes: "We are an estuarine research reserve (~5,000 acres) on the rural Oregon Coast, and we'd like copies of the poster, stickers and leaflets. I am not sure what you would consider to be large quantities, but we could easily use or give out several hundred of each in our rural area, including shipping materials to some local schools."

United States III.Jen Faught (, Conservation Technician at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, writes: "Our focus is on Tidal Wetlands throughout the Chesapeake Bay Watershed. We learned through Coastal America and Joyce Namde at the US State Department that you have some wonderful materials related to wetlands and World Wetland Day in February. We would like to have these materials sent to us so that we may participate."

United States IV.Maryann McGraw (, Wetlands Coordinator, New Mexico Environment Department, Surface Water Quality Bureau in Santa Fe, writes: "We are holding a Children's Water Festival in Silver City, New Mexico, on January 28 and 29th. We will be teaching about 500 southern New Mexico 4th and 5th grade students about many water issues including wetlands and aquatic biology. It would be great if we could get posters and brochures to give to the children. We held a water festival for 200 8th graders in the town of Tularosa in October. About 100 of these children were from the Mescalero Apache Reservation. We had old World Water Day Posters for all the students and they were excited and thrilled with them. We also do a pond science course for 1st graders here in Santa Fe. Could you please send us about 500 posters in English. They can be 2003 and 2004. Stickers and brochures would also be welcome. We could also use an extra 100 posters in English, and 100 in Spanish for other Wetland activities throughout 2004. We really appreciate you having these materials available throughout the world. Thank you ever so much."

United States V.Molly Hetrick (, Recreation Supervisor, Millbrook Marsh Nature Center, State College, Pennsylvania, writes: "Our WWD celebration was held on Sunday, February 1st. Staff from the nature center and the Pennsylvania State University Cooperative Wetlands Center prepared a program for visitors to learn more about wetlands and their importance - it began with a one hour walk through the Millbrook Marsh Nature Center on the recently constructed boardwalk trail system that leads visitors through the beautiful marsh while protecting the fragile areas from human impact. Due to our central Pennsylvania weather lately, the marsh was covered by about 12 inches of snow and the temperature was about 30 degrees F. The walk focused on the marsh in winter, observing and identifying animal tracks in the snow, and discussing how animals adapt, migrate, or hibernate during the winters. 12 adults and 4 children participated in the program, despite the temperature, and enjoyed watching the Ramsar video after the walk. Hot chocolate was enjoyed by all and discussion focused on the marsh and the future of this important resource, nestled into the heart of Central Pennsylvania. The program was a great success and is one that the Millbrook Marsh Nature Center plans to hold each year. Thank you again for the support and materials provided by the Ramsar group."

United States VI.Paula Loader ( writes: "Hello Valerie, I am feeling a little wetland-homesick. Throughout much of 2003, I was involved in a restoration project with a fabulous group of people from the little coastal settlement at Kuku on the West Coast of the North Island in Aotearoa, New Zealand. The iwi (tribe) Ngati Tukorehe have undertaken an ambitious project to restore a culturally significant wetland on tribally owned land. In tandem with the restoration project, a training programme is being developed and taught through a local Wananga (education centre) so that future generations will have the skills to continue to practice good environmental stewardship and care for this wetland and its environs. I understand that a celebration is planned for World Wetlands Day and would like to request that a dozen world wetlands day posters and stickers and thirty or so "Working for Wetlands" leaflets be sent to Patumakuku to help raise local awareness. Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend as I am stranded on the other side of the Pacific Ocean, in California. But I am hoping to organise something with the local school my kids are attending; Paden Elementary in Alameda, California."

United States VII.Sharon T. Brown of Beavers: Wetlands & Wildlife ( in Dolgeville, New York, writes that library exhibits are being planned to last several weeks.

United States VIII.Casey Schmidt (, President of the Wetlands Club at the University of Florida in Gainesville, writes: "Our goal on Wetlands Day is to raise awareness among our community, which is the University of Florida campus. We will do this by having a wetland clean-up in one of the many wetlands here on campus. Our hope is to inspire students who see us."

United States: Puerto Rico.Carlos Morales Agrinzoni (cmorales@mail.SUAGM.EDU) of the Coalición para la Conservación de la Ciénaga Las Cucharillas writes that the the Coalition and the School of Environmental Affairs of the Metropolitan University united to organize the first WWD celebration in Puerto Rico, an environmental forum that brought together leading community and government agencies to engage in a dialogue on the actions, profits and difficulties in the conservation the wetlands and allowed community groups to display the actions that they have developed in their communities. It was attended by the president of the Cámara de Representates de Puerto Rico, Hon. Carlos Vizcarrondo. More here.

Venezuela I.L.Ciro Marcano ( and Zulay Poggi (, El Morro de lecherias- Lecherias, Estado Anzoategui, writes: "Dear Ramsar person, We are interested in celebrating Wetland Day at the Unare Coastal Lagoon in Venezuela. Professor Zulay Poggi has an educational project there and we would like to distribute the material at different schools -- they are about four schools (kids from 7 -15 years old)-- we work with. So please send us a substantial amount of copies of the material (BUT PLEASE IN SPANISH!) (30 maybe), or as much as your budget can allow. You can check our web site at: and".

Venezuela II. Adriana Moreno (, Marine Biology Student, writes: "Students from Universidad de Oriente in the Marine Biology school in Venezuela would be greatly pleased if we could get some materials to celebrate World Wetlands Day."

Venezuela III.José Alí Moncada ( está escribiendo: "Para el Día Mundial de los Humedales tenemos prevista la realización de diversas actividades que le paso a detallar: 1.) Foro "La Educación Ambiental y los humedales de Venezuela". A realizarse en el Instituto Pedagógico de Caracas (Universidad Pedagógica Experimental Libertador) es una actividad abierta al público en general y dirigida a estudiantes de educación y publico interesado en el tema en el que se discutirán las siguinetes temáticas: - Los humedales de Venezuela - Los humedales de Venezuela como espacios para la educación ambiental - Experiencias educativas ambientales en humedales de Venezuela. 2) En los Sitios Ramsar: - PN Archipiélago Los Roques: Actividad especial con la Escuela de El Gran Roque - PN Laguna de Tacarigua - Actividad especial del Grupo de Guardaparquitos (Programa que está siendo financiado por el FHF). 3) Los días 4, 5 y 6 se dictará el Taller "Manejo de Conflictos en zonas marino-costeras", financiado por la Redmanglar a través del CENAMB - UCV en Venezuela, en el sitio Ramsar y Parque nacional Laguna de Tacarigua. A esta actividad se ha convocado a una gran diversidad de actores relacionados con la problematica ambiental del área. En posterior fecha le remitiremos un informe de las actividades realizadas." Informe.

Venezuela IV.Alejandro Luy (, Gerente General, Fundación Tierra Viva in Caracas, está escribiendo: "Fundación Tierra Viva y Apalancar (, un portal de organizaciones de desarrollo en Venezuela, darán difusión a una muestra de los Micros Radiales Bilingües (español-warao) sobre Ambiente, Cultura y Salud en el Delta del Orinoco, elaborados por Fundación Tierra Viva con el financiamiento de la empresa ConocoPhillips y sus aliados OPIC, ENI y PDVSA-CVP, en el marco del Programa de Desarrollo Sustentable Delta del Orinoco que ejecuta Fundación Tierra Viva."

Venezuela V. Yaneth Saade Gamboa (, Gerente de Relaciones Institucionales, Bioparques (, está escribiendo: "Les escribimos desde Bioparques (asociación civil para la conservación de los Parques Nacionales de Venezuela), con el fin de reportales las actividades llevadas a cabo por nuestra institución para celebrar el Día Mundial de los Humedales." Informe y nota de prensa.

Venezuela VI. Adriana Moreno (, on behalf of Marine Biology Students from Conservation Class, Universidad de Oriente, Boca de Río-Venezuela, reports that she and her colleagues performed several projects, including puppets, theater plays, and games, for the children of a school in Peninsula de Macanao, Isla de Margaria, and since then have been getting further requests to repeat their programme at other schools. Here is a brief report with photos.

Viet Nam I.Viet Hong ( of Ramsar Viet Nam writes: "To commemorate the World Wetlands Day this year, Vietnam organised a number of activities to raise awareness of the values of wetlands and promote the sustainable use of this invaluable resource." Here is her report.

Viet Nam II. See International: Mekong River Basin, above.

Examples of the translation and local adaptation of Ramsar materials:

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

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