Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals

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Convention on Migratory Species
Convention on Migratory Species Logo.svg
Type Multilateral
Context Wildlife conservation
Signed6 November 1979 (1979-23-06)
Location Bonn, Germany
Effective1 November 1983 (1983-11-01)
ConditionRatification by 15 states
Parties
Depositary Government of Germany
Languages
Wikisource-logo.svg Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals at Wikisource

The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals, also known as the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) or the Bonn Convention, is an international agreement that aims to conserve migratory species within their migratory ranges. The Agreement was signed under the auspices of the United Nations Environment Programme and is concerned with conservation of wildlife and habitats on a global scale. [1]

Contents

Signed in 1979 in Bonn, Germany, the Convention entered into force in 1983. As of September 2019, there were 129 Member States to the Convention. The depositary is the government of the Federal Republic of Germany.

The CMS is the only global, and United Nations-based, intergovernmental organization established exclusively for the conservation and management of terrestrial, aquatic and avian migratory species. The CMS, and its daughter Agreements, determine policy and provide further guidance on specific issues through their Strategic Plans, Action Plans, resolutions, decisions and guidelines.

Fundamental principles

Fundamental Principles of the Convention are set out in Article 2. The Parties acknowledge the importance of migratory species being conserved and of Range States agreeing to take action to this end "whenever possible and appropriate", "paying special attention to migratory species the conservation status of which is unfavourable and taking individually or in cooperation appropriate and necessary steps to conserve such species and their habitat." Further in Article 2(2) The Parties "acknowledge" [but do not commit in stronger language, cf Art 2(3) "shall"] "the need to take action to avoid any migratory species becoming endangered". [1]

Article 2(3) of the Convention states that

the Parties:

(a) Should promote, cooperate in and support research relating to migratory species;
(b) Shall endeavour to provide immediate protection for migratory species included in Appendix I; and

(c) Shall endeavour to conclude AGREEMENTS covering the conservation and management of migratory species included in Appendix II.

Parties to the Convention

Map showing the States Parties of the CMS:
States Parties
Signed, but not ratified
Participating non-parties Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals States Parties.svg
Map showing the States Parties of the CMS:
  States Parties
  Signed, but not ratified
  Participating non-parties

States Parties

The following are all Parties to the convention, as of September 2019: [2] [3]

Sovereign states

Other states/entities

Signed, but not ratified

Participating non-parties

The following, while not parties to the Convention, are party to one or more of the Agreements and/or have signed one or more of the MOUs: [2] [3]

Sovereign states

Other states/entities

Species Coverage

The CMS Family covers a great diversity of migratory species. The Appendices of CMS include many mammals, including land mammals, marine mammals and bats; birds; fish; reptiles and one insect. Among the instruments, AEWA covers 254 species of birds that are ecologically dependent on wetlands for at least part of their annual cycle. EUROBATS covers 52 species of bat, the Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory Sharks seven species of shark, the IOSEA Marine Turtle MOU six species of marine turtle and the Raptors MoU 76 species of birds of prey.

Appendix I – Threatened Migratory Species

Migratory species threatened with extinction are listed on Appendix I of the Convention, with relevant provisions outlined in Article III, paragraphs 4 and 5. Parties that are Range States to Appendix I species are obliged to afford them strict protection. CMS Parties strive towards strictly protecting these animals, conserving or restoring the places where they live, mitigating obstacles to migration and controlling other factors that might endanger them. Besides establishing obligations for each State joining the Convention, CMS promotes concerted action among the Range States of many of these species.

Appendix II – Migratory Species requiring international cooperation

Migratory species that need or would significantly benefit from international co-operation are listed in Appendix II of the Convention. These species, either individually or by taxonomic group, are the basis for establishing instruments – regional or global – under CMS. For this reason, the Convention encourages the Range States to conclude global or regional Agreements.

CMS Instruments

Agreements

The CMS acts as a framework convention and encourages its States Parties to conclude global or regional agreements. Article V of the Convention lays out what Agreements agreed to under its auspices should include. These agreements are usually legally binding treaties that aim to "restore the migratory species concerned to a favorable conservation status or to maintain it in such a status." To date seven Agreements have been signed, they are as follow: [4] [5]

Memoranda of Understanding (MOU)

In addition, several Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) have also been concluded under the auspices of CMS. While, not full Agreements, these MOU still aim to conserve various migratory species. To date 19 MOU have been signed, they are as follow: [6]

Organizational Structure of CMS

Conference of the Parties (COP)

The Conference of the Parties of the CMS acts as its principal decision-making body. It is composed of all States Parties to the Convention, as well as any observers that wish to participate in the proceedings of the Conference. COPs are held at least every three years. [5] [7]

The functions of the COP are enumerated in Article VII of the Convention. At Conferences, the States Parties review the implementation of this Convention, as well as approve all financial regulations of the Convention. [5]

List of Conference of Parties of the CMS [8]
ConferenceYearDatesLocation
COP 1
198521 – 26 OctoberFlag of Germany.svg Bonn, Germany
COP 2
198813 – 14 OctoberFlag of Switzerland.svg Geneva, Switzerland
COP 3
199109 – 13 SeptemberFlag of Switzerland.svg Geneva, Switzerland
COP 4
199407 – 11 JuneFlag of Kenya.svg Nairobi, Kenya
COP 5
199710 – 16 AprilFlag of Switzerland.svg Geneva, Switzerland
COP 6
199910 – 16 NovemberFlag of South Africa.svg Cape Town, South Africa
COP 7
200218 – 24 SeptemberFlag of Germany.svg Bonn, Germany
COP 8
200520 – 25 NovemberFlag of Kenya.svg Nairobi, Kenya
COP 9
200801 – 05 DecemberFlag of Italy.svg Rome, Italy
COP 10
201120 – 25 NovemberFlag of Norway.svg Bergen, Norway
COP 11
201404 – 09 NovemberFlag of Ecuador.svg Quito, Ecuador
COP 12
201723 – 28 OctoberFlag of the Philippines.svg Manila, Philippines
COP 13
202015 – 22 FebruaryFlag of India.svg Gandhinagar, India

Standing Committee (StC)

The Standing Committee is responsible for carrying out interim activities on behalf of the Conference of the Parties in between its meetings. The Committee meets at least once a year. It also usually meets immediately before and after any COPs. [9]

The functions of the Standing Committee were established by Resolution 1.1 of COP 1 in 1985. However, in 2008 at COP 9, the makeup of the Standing Committee was overhauled. Under Resolution 9.15 the composition of the Committee, as well as its functions we updated. Its updated functions include: [9] [10] [11]

The Committee is composed of 15 members who are elected to serve three-year terms, or from the end of one COP until the end of the next. Alternate members are also selected. Under Resolution 9.15, the composition is as follows: [11]

List of Members of the Standing Committee [9]
Region / MemberMembersAlternate Members
AfricaFlag of the Republic of the Congo.svg  Congo Flag of Mali.svg  Mali
Flag of South Africa.svg  South Africa Flag of Algeria.svg  Algeria
Flag of Tanzania.svg  United Republic of Tanzania Flag of Kenya.svg  Kenya
AsiaFlag of Mongolia.svg  Mongolia (Vice-Chair)Flag of Tajikistan.svg  Tajikistan
Flag of Kyrgyzstan.svg  Kyrgyzstan Flag of Pakistan.svg  Pakistan
South and Central America
and the Caribbean
Flag of Bolivia.svg  Bolivia (Plurinational State of) Flag of Argentina.svg  Argentina
Flag of Costa Rica.svg  Costa Rica Flag of Panama.svg  Panama
EuropeFlag of Norway.svg  Norway (Chair)Vacant
Flag of France.svg  France Flag of Latvia.svg  Latvia
Flag of Georgia.svg  Georgia Flag of Switzerland.svg   Switzerland
North AmericaVacant
OceaniaFlag of Fiji.svg  Fiji Flag of Palau.svg  Palau
DepositaryFlag of Germany.svg  Germany
Host of COP 12Flag of the Philippines.svg  Philippines
Host of COP 13Flag of India.svg  India

Scientific Council (ScC)

The main objective of the Scientific Council is to provide advice on scientific matters to CMS bodies, as well as CMS States Parties. The Council makes recommendations to the COP issues such as research on migratory species, specific conservation and management measures, the inclusion of migratory species in the Appendices and designation of species for Concerted or Cooperative Actions under the Convention. [5] [12]

The functions of the Scientific Council are enumerated in Article VIII of the Convention. However, it was not established until 1985 under Resolution 1.4 of COP 1. Each State Party is entitled to appoint one qualified expert as a member of the Scientific Council, as well as one alternate scientific councillor. Additionally, the COP may also appoint to the Council other experts to cover fields of particular interest to the Convention. [5] [12] [13]

Sessional Committee

In 2014, at COP 11, a new sub-body of the Scientific Council was created via Resolution 11.4. This representative selection of the membership of the Scientific Council is called the Sessional Committee. It is composed of nine COP-appointed Councillors, as well as fifteen Party-appointed Councillors (three from Africa; three from Asia; three from Europe; three from Oceania; three from South and Central America and the Caribbean). [12] [14]

The Sessional Committee works during the intersessional period between two consecutive meetings of the COP, and is responsible for the implementation of the mandate assigned to the Scientific Council by the COP. All work done by the Sessional Committee is considered work of the Scientific Council. [12]

Secretariat

THE CMS Secretariat acts as the Convention's coordinating body. The CMS Secretariat is provided and administered by the United Nations Environment Programme. [15]

The functions of the Secretariat are laid out in Article IX of the Convention. They include: arranging for and servicing meetings of the COP, Scientific Council and Standing Committee, maintaining liaison between the States Parties, disseminating information that furthers the objectives and implementation CMS, preparing COP reports, promote the conclusion of CMS Agreements, among other functions. [5] [15]

The Secretariat has based in Bonn, Germany since its creation, but was relocated to the United Nations Campus in Bonn in 1998. Additionally, since 2009, the Secretariat also maintains an out-post office in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. The Abu Dhabi office oversees implementation of the MOU on the Conservation of Migratory Birds of Prey in Africa and Eurasia, and the MOU on the Conservation and Management of Dugongs and their Habitats throughout their range. The office is hosted by the Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi. [15] [16]

The current Executive Secretary of the Convention is Amy Fraenkel. [17]

Implementation

Reporting

Article 6(3) requires Parties which are Range States for migratory species listed in Appendix I or II to inform the CoP through the Secretariat, at least six months prior to each ordinary meeting of the Conference, on measures that they are taking to implement the Convention for these species.

Domestic legislation

To varying degrees the Bonn Convention has been incorporated into domestic law by the Parties.

See also

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Memorandum of Understanding concerning Conservation Measures for Marine Turtles of the Atlantic Coast of Africa

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Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation of Migratory Sharks

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Bukhara Deer Memorandum of Understanding

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Pacific Islands Cetaceans Memorandum of Understanding

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Siberian Crane Memorandum of Understanding

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West African Elephant Memorandum of Understanding

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West African Aquatic Mammals Memorandum of Understanding

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Great Bustard Memorandum of Understanding Agreement to conserve a vulnerable bird species

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High Andean Flamingos Memorandum of Understanding

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Southern South American Migratory Grassland Bird Species Memorandum of Understanding

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Mediterranean Monk Seal Memorandum of Understanding

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Ruddy-headed Goose Memorandum of Understanding

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References

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