World Wetlands Day 2013


2 February each year is World Wetlands Day. It marks the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. Each year since 1997, 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.

2013 is the UN International Year for Water Cooperation and an ideal opportunity for Ramsar to look at the connection between water and wetlands.

17/01/13 | Read here the Secretary General's message for WWD 2013 (PDF).

For WWD2013 we have joined hands with UNESCO’s International Hydrological Programme who have a lead role for the International Year and they have partnered with us in the production of our poster and leaflet. Our theme is Wetlands and water management, an area of work that has been given considerable attention by our Scientific and Technical Review Panel over many years and resulted in much helpful guidance for our member countries.

Our slogan? Wetlands take care of water, reflecting the interdependence between water and wetlands and the key role that wetlands play. Wisely using our wetlands is an essential component of the delivery of sustainable water management. In our leaflet we will be painting the big picture, looking at who manages water and the many challenges from governance to transboundary, agricultural and urban water management issues, to water storage issues and water diversion schemes. Finally we take a look at what we can all do at the global, regional and local levels in ensuring that wetland ecosystems and their water are well managed for the benefit of people and wildlife. 

What have we produced for WWD 2013? As usual we have a poster, sticker and leaflet on the theme, as well as something for children and a wetland cartoon for you to share and customise.

Download here our hands-on activity [PDF]

Download here the leaflet [PDF] Download here the poster [PDF]

Download here the sticker [PDF]Download here the comic strip [JPEG]. Version without text here [JPEG]

Receiving our materials by post. If you did not receive our pack of materials last year and would like to receive them then please write to and ask to be put on the mailing list – and don’t forget to send your full postal address.

Adapting our materialsSee here for adaptations in previous years. We will again be making the design files for our materials available. If you would like to receive the design files please write to


The Ramsar Secretariat encourages the translation of our materials into national and local languages and the editing of materials to include a national/local perspective.
Please note:

(i) The images in all of our materials cannot be used for any other purpose without the permission of the credited photographers.

(ii) Our materials may only be used for non-commercial purposes. 

Since its inception, the production and distribution of materials for World Wetlands Day have been financially supported by the Evian Project funded by the Danone Group.

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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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