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Gandhinagar, Gujarat, February 17, 2020
India today assumed the presidency of the UN body on migratory species for the next three years at the 13th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species (COP-13) with a focus on a collaborative approach to tackle biodiversity issues.
Assuming the presidency at the conference, Union Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change Prakash Javadekar said COP in India will mark the start of focused attention to migratory species and their habitats.
The conference kicks off ‘“Super Year for Environment”, which will include a UN Summit in September and culminate in the UN Biodiversity Conference at the end of 2020, when a new global biodiversity strategy for the next decade will be adopted - the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
“Migratory birds, mammals and aquatic species are increasingly in danger on their migration routes and countries need to work together to protect them. For India, caring about these species is part of our ethos to protect all animals and natural life on earth. India is very happy to host CMS COP13," said the Minister.
Stressing the urgency to take collaborative action towards conservation, CMS Executive Secretary Amy Fraenkel said, “COP13 comes at a critical time for wildlife conservation, with continued downward trends of habitat loss and species decline.
Among others, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and Union Minister of State for Environment and Forests Babul Supriyo were also present at the opening ceremony.
The Convention on Migratory Species is the only multilateral treaty dedicated to addressing the needs of migratory species and their habitats on a global scale. The conference will set in motion actions needed to better protect migratory species that rely on on multilateral cooperation for their survival.
Migratory species of wild animals move from one habitat to another during different times of the year, due to various factors such as food, sunlight, temperature, climate, etc. The movement between habitats can sometimes exceed thousands of kilometres/miles for some migratory birds and mammals. A migratory route will typically have nesting sites, breeding sites, availability of preferred food and requires the availability of suitable habitat before and after each migration.
India is home to several migratory species of wildlife including snow leopard, Amur falcons, bar headed Geese, black-necked cranes, marine turtles, dugongs, humpbacked whales, and so on.