A public forum will be held in Salamander Bay on how the Mambo Wanda Wetlands can be assessed under the Ramsar Convention.
Dr Stuart Blanch, CEO of the Hunter Wetlands Centre, will discuss how this could provide stronger recognition, more funding for management and legal protection.
The Ramsar Convention is an international treaty for the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands, named after the city of Ramsar in Iran where the convention was signed in 1971.
The Community Forum will be held at Tomaree Community Centre, beginning at 2.00pm on Sunday 27 November and is open to the general public.
Dr Blanch said any move to have the Mambo Wanda Wetlands listed under Ramsar would require broad community support to enable a detailed assessment against criteria for formal listing and he encouraged as many people as possible to attend the forum.
“It is significant that for 20 years volunteers have been caring for the Mambo Wetlands Reserve and Wanda Wetlands Reserve, which are important elements of wildlife corridor and habitat for endangered and threatened species of fauna,” Mr Blanch told Bay News Of The Area.
“Thanks to these volunteers’ efforts, these reserves can now be considered for international recognition,” Dr Blanch said.
Dr Blanch has been CEO of the Hunter Wetlands Centre for the last two years, following a nine-year stint in Darwin as Director of the Northern Territory Environment Centre and as an environmental campaigner for WWF-Australia.
The Hunter Wetlands Centre was added to the Hunter Estuary Wetlands Ramsar Site in 2002 as an extension to the Ramsar listed Kooragang Nature Reserve.
Closer to Port Stephens is the Myall Lakes Ramsar site, which was listed in 1999. It comprises Myall Lakes National Park, Corrie Island Nature Reserve, Little Broughton Island Nature Reserve and part of Gir-um-bit National Park.
Part of Port Stephens-Great Lakes Marine Park is also within the Ramsar site.
For more information please contact Nigel Dique (secretary of EcoNetwork) Port Stephens on 0423024819 or email@example.com
By Jewell DRURY