Shorebirds of the Yellow Sea

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

5. Internationally important shorebird sites in the Yellow Sea

5.3 Site Accounts (continued)

5.3.4 Yancheng National Nature Reserve

Site information

Location: Jiangsu Province, China. 33º 30' N, 120º 30' E

Area: Nature Reserve: 453 000 ha; Intertidal flats: c. 150 000 ha.

Wetland type: Complex of permanent, fresh to brackish ponds and marshes, marshy grassland, extensive reed-beds and intertidal flats, with areas of fish and shrimp ponds and saltpans (Scott 1989).

Protected Area status: Ramsar site. National Nature Reserve. Man and the Biosphere Reserve. East Asian-Australasian Shorebird Network Site.

Threats: Drainage for agriculture and conversion to aquaculture ponds; human disturbance (Scott 1989). Past reclamation for port and industrial development, roads, saltpans and mariculture has been extensive and is continuing at a high rate (Barter et al. in prep.).

Count information

Counts, with varying degrees of coverage, were conducted during NM in 1990, 1992, 1993, 1995 and 2001, during SM in 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993 and 1995, during the northern summer in 1993 and 1994, and during the NB season from 1989 to 1995 (Wang & Liu 1994; Wang 1997; Barter et al. in prep.).

Internationally important species counts for Yancheng National Nature Reserve
Northward migration
Count
Ref
Dunlin 57 867 1
Red-necked Stint 10 073 1
Marsh Sandpiper 9 026 1
Grey Plover 5 295 1
Kentish Plover 4 165 2
Spotted Redshank 3 834 1
Red Knot 3 169 2
Sharp-tailed Sandpiper 3 125 1
Sanderling 3 095 2
Lesser Sand Plover 1 765 3
Oriental Plover 1 717 2
Common Greenshank 955 2
Asian Dowitcher 945 1
Ruddy Turnstone 860 3
Broad-billed Sandpiper 717 2
Black-winged Stilt 482 1
Little Ringed Plover 255 2
Spotted Greenshank 35 2
     
Southward migration
 
 
Dunlin 18 559 2
Spotted Redshank 7 150 2
Marsh Sandpiper 6 022 2
Red-necked Stint 5 822 2
Kentish Plover 4 890 2
Little Ringed Plover 4 658 2
Common Greenshank 2 325 2
Lesser Sand Plover 1 787 2
Sharp-tailed Sandpiper 1 771 2
Black-tailed Godwit 1 686 2
Ruddy Turnstone 919 2
Broad-billed Sandpiper 806 2
Grey-headed Lapwing 542 2
Eurasian Curlew 379 2
Sanderling 362 2
Black-winged Stilt 327 2
Asian Dowitcher 285 2
     
Non-breeding season
 
 
Kentish Plover 3 937 2
Spotted Redshank 1 511 2
Sanderling 1 102 2
Common Greenshank 803 2
Pied Avocet 775 2
Eurasian Curlew 697 2
Eurasian Oystercatcher 200 4

Significance of site

Highest counts: NM 111 285; SM 82 530; NB 27 181.

Supports:

  • 23 species in internationally important numbers (NM 18; SM 17; NB 7; B 3);
  • >10% of the estimated flyway populations of: Marsh Sandpiper during NM and >5% during SM;
  • >5% of the estimated flyway population of Spotted Redshank during NM and >10% during SM;
  • >10% of the estimated flyway population of Sanderling during NM and >5% during the NB season;
  • >5% of the estimated flyway populations of Dunlin during NM and Kentish Plover during SM;
  • >10% of the estimated flyway population of Little Ringed Plover during SM; internationally important numbers of the endangered Spotted Greenshank during NM;
  • the vulnerable Spoon-billed Sandpiper during NM and SM (maximum counts: NM: 8; SM: 18);
  • internationally important numbers of immature Eastern Curlew during the northern summer (1 718 max.);
  • internationally important breeding populations of Common Redshank, Eurasian Oystercatcher and Black-winged Stilt; breeding populations of Grey-headed Lapwing, Kentish Plover, Common Redshank (probably internationally important) and Oriental Pratincole;
  • the highest recorded internationally important numbers of Spotted Redshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Ruddy Turnstone, Sanderling, Red-necked Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Dunlin and Oriental Plover in the Yellow Sea during NM, of Spotted Redshank, Marsh Sandpiper, Common Greenshank, Ruddy Turnstone, Red-necked Stint, Sharp-tailed Sandpiper, Broad-billed Sandpiper and Little Ringed Plover during SM, and of Spotted Redshank, Common Greenshank, Sanderling, Pied Avocet and Kentish Plover during the NB season.

Species count references

  1. Barter et al. in prep.
  2. Wang 1997
  3. Wang and Liu 1994
  4. Scott 1989

5.3.5 Huang He National Nature Reserve

Site information

Location: Shandong Province, China. 37º 55' N, 119º 00' E

Area: Huang He NNR: 153 000 ha, with 38 534 ha of intertidal flat and 32 772 ha of marsh land.

Wetland type: Intertidal flats and coastal marshes, saltpans, fish and shrimp ponds.

Protected Area status: National Nature Reserve. East Asian-Australasian Shorebird Network Site.

Threats: Reclamation for agriculture, shrimp ponds and oil extraction, human disturbance, unsustainable fishing and oil industry pollution (Zhu et al. 1998).

Count information

Comprehensive counts were conducted in September 1991 (Wang et al. 1991), April-May 1992 (Wang et al. 1992), late April to early May 1997, second-half April 1998 and early April 1999 (Zhu et al. 2000). Counting was carried out within the Reserve and also at two other locations inside the Delta region - Wuhaozhang and the joint mouth of the Guangli and Zima Rivers.

Internationally important species counts for Huang He National Nature Reserve
Northward migration
Count
Ref
Kentish Plover 24 313 1
Dunlin 24 106 1
Little Curlew 17 000 2
Grey Plover 14 899 1
Great Knot 12 816 1
Bar-tailed Godwit 10 678 1
Eurasian Curlew 9 766 1
Black-tailed Godwit 7 197 1
Whimbrel 2 626 1
Marsh Sandpiper 1 135 1
Eastern Curlew 1 125 1
Terek Sandpiper 724 1
Spotted Redshank 594 1
Common Greenshank 585 1
Pied Avocet 450 3
Eurasian Oystercatcher 130 3
     
Southward migration
 
 
Marsh Sandpiper 4 246 4
Kentish Plover 2 238 4
Terek Sandpiper 1 228 4
Eurasian Curlew 912 4
Spotted Greenshank 11 4

Significance of site

Highest counts: NM 130 122; SM 70 748.

Supports:

  • 17 species in internationally important numbers (NM 16; SM 5);
  • >20% of the estimated flyway population of Eurasian Curlew during NM;
  • >10% of the estimated flyway populations of Kentish Plover and Grey Plover during NM;
  • >10% of the estimated Little Curlew population during NM. Numbers of this species were estimated by transecting grassland areas - see Species Account for more details;
  • internationally important numbers of the endangered Spotted Greenshank during SM; also occurs during NM (maximum count: 4).
  • breeding populations of Eurasian Oystercatcher, Grey-headed Lapwing, Black-winged Stilt, Kentish Plover, Common Redshank and Oriental Pratincole;
  • the highest recorded internationally important numbers of Little Curlew, Whimbrel, Eurasian Curlew, Pied Avocet, Grey Plover and Kentish Plover in the Yellow Sea during NM.

This site probably supports >200 000 shorebirds during NM and probably >100 000 during SM. Additional counts during SM would probably allow additional internationally significant species to be identified and also an improved estimate to be made of shorebird numbers during that period.

Species count references

  1. Zhu et al. 2000
  2. Barter et al. 1999
  3. Wang et al. 1992
  4. Wang et al. 1991