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Asian Waterbirds census
Editor:WI  Time:2015-1-9
With many of you busy preparing for the Asian Waterbird Census counts in January 2015, now is a timely moment to look back over the past year and ahead to the next. With the continued help of national coordinators and participants, we have made some progress in filling important data gaps from 2008 to present – 23 countries have now sent us counts for this period. We have also been busy developing new tools to help support quicker and easier data collection in the future. We are developing an online database to accommodate the AWC data and have trialled a new excel form in India to help participants and state coordinators transfer data from paper forms more easily. We will expand this data entry trial to Bhutan, who will join the census for the first time in 2015. This will provide new and valuable information for the census, though we are aware there are still important gaps to fill in the region and we will be looking to strengthen monitoring in these areas for the future.

Next year will also see an update of the Waterbird Population Estimates, a major policy document for which the International Waterbird Census remains a key source of information. We hope especially to improve the number of populations in Asia with reliable trends and estimates - especially since the population estimates of a number of species are outdated and some are changing (mainly declining rapidly).

As ever (and as national coordinators are well aware!) securing long-term and sustainable funding for the census will be a priority for next year. We are especially grateful for the continued support of the Wetlands International Members, whose contributions provide a crucial foundation for the coordination and data management for the entire IWC. We are also very grateful for the many hours put in by national coordinators and their networks of counters to collect and collate waterbird counts.

We wish you all a successful survey for 2015!
 
 
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