Shorebirds of the Yellow Sea

Importance, threats and conservation status
Mark Barter
Wetlands International, 2002
ISBN 90 5882 009 2

4. Shorebirds occuring in internationally important numbers at Yellow Sea sites (continued)

4.4 Species accounts (continued)

4.4.32 Kentish Plover Charadrius alexandrinus

Subspecies Worldwide 5 (alexandrinus, dealbatus, seebohmi, nivosus and occidentalis); Yellow Sea 1 (dealbatus) and, probably, alexandrinus.

Distribution of C. a. dealbatus and C. a. alexandrinus in the EAAF

Breeding: C. a. dealbatus, e. and se. China, s. Primorye, Sakhalin and s. Kurile Is., s. Japan and Ryukyu Is; C. a. alexandrinus, Torei L., s. Transbaikalia, Mongolia and ne. China.

Non-breeding: Mainly coastal, but also inland. C. a. dealbatus, e. and se. China, s. Japan, s. to The Philippines and Borneo. C. a. alexandrinus, w. Indonesia; also thought to occur in Taiwan (W.T. Liu in litt.).

Usage and importance of Yellow Sea

Occurrence: Intertidal areas and adjacent non-tidal wetlands. B Breeds widely around Yellow Sea coasts, but little data available. 1000 pairs at Shuangtaizihekou NNR (Y.X. Li in litt.), very common breeding bird at Yancheng NNR (H. Wang pers. comm.) and >500 pairs in South Korea (Yi & Kim in prep.). NM Widespread; very common in the Bo Hai and e. China, and common on w. coast of South Korea; few in n. China and sw. and s. coasts of South Korea. SM Similar to NM, except much large numbers in South Korea on w. and s. coasts. NB Common on e. coast of China; few elsewhere. Numbers are probably underestimated due to the dispersed distribution of the species.

Movements: NM Early migrant with numbers peaking in April, then declining significantly by late April. SM In South Korea, passage occurs during August to October.

Significance of Yellow Sea: The Yellow Sea is extremely important for this species as it supports >90% of the estimated flyway population during NM.

Key sites: 21 sites of international importance have been identified, 13 in South Korea and 8 in China; 11 of the sites are important during NM, 16 during SM and 4 during the NB season (see site location maps below). Breeds in internationally important numbers at Yancheng NNR and Shuangtaizihekou NNR (see map below for site locations). 6 sites are important on both NM and SM (Dong Sha, Yancheng NNR, Huang He NNR, Tianjin Municipality, Shi Jiu Tuo and Mangyeung Gang Hagu). Huang He NNR holds 25% and Chongming Dao PNR >5% of the estimated flyway population during NM, whilst Mangyeung Gang Hagu held >10% and Dongjin Gang Hagu, Shi Jiu Tuo and Yancheng NNR held >5% during SM.

Status of key sites: 4 of the Chinese sites and part of 1 of the South Korean sites (Dongjin Gang Hagu) are within Protected Areas. The 2 most important sites during SM, the Dongjin and Mangyeung estuaries, are currently being reclaimed as part of the Saemangeum Reclamation Project.

Major gaps in knowledge: Insufficient information on general distribution of both subspecies and on the breeding distribution of dealbatus around Yellow Sea. Incomplete geographical and temporal coverage in China. No information from North Korea.

EAAF POPULATION ESTIMATE: 95 000
YELLOW SEA
Status: Probably resident, breeding visitor, passage migrant and non-breeding visitor
Estimated minimum numbers:
NM: South Korea: 6 700; China: 83 000.
SM: South Korea: 38 000.
NB: South Korea: Few.
INTERNATIONALLY IMPORTANT SITES (and Protected Area status)
South Korea: 13 (part of 1)
China: 8 (4)

Site count references

  1. Zhu et al. 2000
  2. Barter et al. 1997a
  3. Wang 1997
  4. S.P. Zhang in litt.
  5. Yi & Kim in prep.
  6. RSPB Sabbatical Report 2002
  7. Barter et al. 2000d
  8. Wang & Barter 1998
  9. J.J. Lu in litt.
  10. F. Heintzenberg in litt.
  11. Moores 1999a
  12. Wang et al. 1991
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover
  China   South Korea
1 Jiu Duan Sha 9 Ganghwa Do
2 Chongming Dao PNR 10 Yeong Jong Do
3 Dong Sha 11 Namyang Man
4 Yancheng NNR 12 Asan Man
5 Huang He NNR 13 Seosan Reclaimed Area
6 Tianjin Municipality 14 Geum Gang Hagu
7 Shi Jiu Tuo 15 Mangyeung Gang Hagu
8 Shuangtaizihekou NNR 16 Dongjin Gang Hagu
    17 Paeksu Tidal Flat
    18 Hampyeong Man
    19 Meian Gun Tidal Flat
    20 Aphae Do
    21 Suncheon Man
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during northward migration
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during northward migration
  Site Country Count Ref
1 Huang He NNR China 24 313 1
2 Chongming Dao PNR China 7 202 2
3 Yancheng NNR China 4 165 3
4 Tianjin Municipality China 3 000 4
5 Asan Man South Korea 2 100 5
6 Shi Jiu Tuo China 1 994 6
7 Mangyeung Gang Hagu South Korea 1 500 5
8 Shuangtaizihekou NNR China 1 367 7
9 Dong Sha China 1 103 8
10 Seosan Reclaimed Area South Korea 1 063 5
11 Jiu Duan Sha China 1 000 9
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during southward migration
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during southward migration
  Site Country Count Ref
1 Mangyeung Gang Hagu South Korea 11 000 5     5
2 Dongjin Gang Hagu South Korea 8 850 5     5
3 Shi Jiu Tuo China 5 500 10     10
4 Yancheng NNR China 4 890 3     3
5 Namyang Man South Korea 4 600 5     5
6 Aphae Do South Korea 4 332 11     11
7 Ganghwa Do South Korea 3 500 5     5
8 Yeong Jong Do South Korea 3 048 5     5
9 Dong Sha China 3 000 8     8
10 Tianjin Municipality China 3 000 4     4
11 Geum Gang Hagu South Korea 2 500 5     5
12 Huang He NNR China 2 238 12     12
13 Hampyeong Man South Korea 1 830 11     11
14 Meian Gun Tidal Flat South Korea 1 345 11     11
15 Suncheon Man South Korea 1 230 5     5
16 Paeksu Tidal Flat South Korea 1 020 5     5
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during the non-breeding season
Sites of international importance for Kentish Plover during the non-breeding season
  Site Country Count Ref
1 Yancheng NNR China 3 937     3
2 Jiu Duan Sha China 1 830     9
3 Chongming Dao PNR China 1 500     9
4 Dong Sha China 1 185     8