Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (Bonn Convention / CMS)

CMS 3K1A8746

DENR Undersecretary Jonas Leones (third from left) served as one of the COP12 panel speakers at the side event on Leading Shark Conservation in Manila on 24 October 2017. [IISD/Kiara Worth ( cop12/ enbots/24oct.html)]

The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), also known as the Bonn Convention, provides a global platform for the conservation and sustainable use of migratory animals and their habitats. It gathers the States through which migratory animals pass and lays the legal foundation for internationally coordinated conservation measures throughout a migratory range.

It enjoins Party States to conserve and manage terrestrial and aquatic migratory species throughout their range. The Parties also agree that Range States (countries where a particular migratory species inhabits, stays temporarily, crosses or overflies at any time on its normal migration route) should take joint conservation action. The Conference of Parties (COP) meets every three years.

The CMS Appendix I includes all migratory species threatened with extinction. Parties are obliged to conserve and restore the habitats of these species, prevent or minimize the adverse effects of activities which may hinder the migration of these species, reduce/control factors which may further endanger the species, and prohibit the collection of such species except for authorized purposes.

Appendix II of the CMS includes migratory species which would significantly benefit from international cooperation such as legally binding treaties (Agreements) or less formal instruments (Memorandum of Understanding).
Focal Office:
Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB)
Date Ratified:
February 1, 1994
Focal Persons/Offices:
Secretary, DENR
Tel. No. (632) 926 3011, 920 4301, 929 6626 loc 2258

OIC-Assistant Secretary for Staff Bureaus and Director, DENR-BMB
Tel. Nos. (632) 924 6031 to 35 local 222, 925 8952 to 53

Chief, Wildlife Conservation Section, Wildlife Resources Division, DENR-BMB
Tel. Nos. (632) 924 6031 to 35 local 222, 925 8952 to 53

Wildlife Resources Division, DENR-BMB
Tel. No. (632) 925 8946, 925 8952, 925 8953
The Philippines is currently a party to the following CMS instruments under Appendix II:
1. Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation and Management of Dugongs and their Habitats throughout their Range (Dugong MoU);
2. Memorandum of Understanding on the Conservation and Management of Marine Turtles and their Habitats of the Indian Ocean and South-East Asia (IOSEA); and
3. Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Conservation of Migratory Sharks.

The national focal point for the MoU on Dugongs and IOSEA is the Biodiversity Management Bureau of the DENR while the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources of the Department of Agriculture serves as the national focal point for the MoU on Migratory Sharks.

During the 12th COP in 2017 when the Philippines served as the COP President, the roles and functions of the Presidency were formalized as follows:
a) Provide political leadership and direction towards achieving the objectives of the Convention;
b) Act as facilitator among all parties to negotiations;
c) Steer efforts by the international community towards implementing the Resolutions and Decisions adopted by the COP;
d) Promote collaboration amongst Parties and stakeholders with respect to implementing adopted Resolutions and Decisions;
e) Assist the Secretariat in elevating the Convention's objectives on the international political agenda; and
f) Reporting on items a to e above to the Standing Committee and the COP.
Policy Issuances:
Republic Act 9147 Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001
DENR Administrative Order 2012 - 01 Declaring Malasi Tree Park and Wildlife Sanctuary as Critical Habitat for Waterbird Species
Sources / Relevant Links:
World Migratory Bird Day (second Saturday in May and October)



To fulfill the country's commitments, the Biodiversity Management Bureau is actively involved in the following programs:
1. Annual Asian Waterbird Count;
2. Marine Turtle Conservation Program;
3. Dugong Conservation Program;
4. Management of internationally important sites for migratory birds (i.e. Tubbataha Reef Natural Parks, Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary, Naujan Lake, Negros Occidental Wetland and Conservation Area, Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary, Sibugay Bay, Hundred Islands Natural Park);
5. Management of Critical Habitats for migratory birds and marine turtles (LPPCHEA, Malasi Lake, Cabusao Wetlands, Carmen Critical Habitat for marine turtles, Magsaysay Critical Habitat for Hawksbill turtles);
6. Coastal and Marine Ecosystems Management Program; and
7. Wetland Conservation Program.

Other updates on the country's compliance to commitments as per the text of the Convention and the Strategic Plan for Migratory Species 2015-2023 (SPMS) are the following:
1. National Policies in place to prohibit the taking of CMS appendix 1 listed species. Some of the policies are RA 9147; DAO 2004-15 Establishing the list of terrestrial threatened species and their categories, and the list of other wildlife species pursuant to Republic Act No. 9147; the national list of threatened species includes CMS I and CMS II listed species (24 migratory birds, saltwater crocodile, 5 marine turtles, and the dugong); National Fisheries Code of the Philippines (RA 8550) - implementing rules of the ban on fishing gear harmful to dolphins; Fisheries Administrative Order (FAO) No. 185-1 (1997) Ban on the taking or catching, selling, purchasing, possessing, transporting and exporting of Dolphins, Whales and Porpoises; FAO No. 193 (1998), on the strict protection of whale sharks and the giant manta ray; and DAO No. 282 of 2010 to intensify the protection of whale shark including guidelines for monitoring and rescuing the species.
2. The conservation of Migratory Species considered in national plans, frameworks and programs. In compliance to this obligation, threatened migratory species are included in the "Preventing Species Extinction Plan" under the PBSAP; protection of migratory birds sites along the East Asian Australasian flyway is one indicator of the PBSAP; there is a National Plan of Action for sharks; there is a Philippine Biodiversity Conservation Priority framework for identifying important sites for migratory species conserva- tion; and there is National Wetland Action plan.
3. Migratory Species habitats are adequately protected and monitored.
The following are being done to fulfill this:
     - Protection of habitats for migratory species are subsumed under the protected areas system such as the Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary, Tubbataha Reefs, Turtle islands, etc. and implementation of the Coastal and Marine program such as LGU-managed marine protected area/ wildlife sanctuaries
     - Establishment of critical habitats for migratory birds such as the Cabusao wetlands, Malasi lake, Naujan lake, etc., pursuant to RA 9147
     - Over 150 migratory bird sites are being monitored annually through participation in the Asian Waterbird Count every January
     - Protection of marine turtle nesting habitats beach with resort owners, and local communities     
     - Management of dugong sanctuaries
     - Over 150 migratory bird sites are being monitored annually through participation to the Asian Waterbird Count every January
     - Publication of the Philippine birding guidelines, guidelines of whale shark interaction; guidelines for marine wildlife interaction (ongoing);
     - Community-based management of whales and dolphins in Babuyan Islands and Pamilacan Island
     - Management of core habitats of whale sharks in Donsol and Leyte
4. Increased awareness on the values of migratory species through various communication, education, participation and awareness activi- ties. The activities are the annual celebration of the World Migratory Bird Day (13 October starting 2018); Philippine Bird Festival with LGU, DOT, CSOs; Partnership program with CSOs and private companies for marine turtles (e.g. Aboitiz, and Montemar Resort); and promotion of migratory sites as ecotourism areas.
5. Initiate or participate in Regional Cooperation. The following region- al activities are ongoing: Membership in the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership since 2006; Coral Triangle Initiative (CTI) threatened species conservation program and management of marine protected area network; RP-Malaysia cooperation for the management of Turtle Islands Heritage Protected Area - convened the bilateral meeting in July 2018; and signatory to three Memoranda of Understanding (Shark MoU, Marine Turtle MoU and Dugong MoU) and implementation of management plan.
6. Contribution to the development of proposals for consideration every CMS COP
The following Philippine-sponsored resolutions were adopted during CMS COP12:
a. Seven species for inclusion under CMS Appendix I and seven for Appendix II;
b. Promoting Marine Protected Area (MPA) Networks in the ASEAN Region Concerted Action for the Conservation of Whale Shark;
c. Promoting conservation of critical intertidal and other coastal habitats for migratory species;
d. Sustainable tourism and migratory species; and
e. Sustainable development and migratory species.
7. Implementation of CMS Resolutions
a. Migratory species and climate change (vulnerability assessments and mitigating measures) - Conduct of climate change vulnerability studies of marine turtles in Turtle Islands, Tawi-tawi
b. Migratory species and renewable energy - Policy harmonization to strengthen biodiversity considerations in the Philippine Environmental Impact Statement System (PEISS)
c. Managing risk of avian influenza - Creation of the Philippine Commit- tee on Zoonosis; avian influenza surveillance integrated in the wildlife disease surveillance targets; conduct of two bird surveillance events in Pampanga with negative results in 2018

The Philippines hosted the 12th Meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on CMS (COP 12) on 22-28 October 2017 at the Philippine Interna- tional Convention Center (PICC) in Manila. This is the first time that a CMS COP was ever convened in Asia. Over 1,000 participants from 91 parties and many non-parties, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations (IGOs and NGOs) attended the event.

As COP President, the country submitted its report during the 48th Standing Committee meeting in October 2018 on the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) recommendation during the meeting held on 3 July 2018 in Montreal, Canada. Issues were on cooperation with other conventions, international organizations and initiatives (CBD/SBI/REC/2/9) to support the Coastal Forum initiative, mainstreaming of Biodiversity Within and Across Sectors (CBD/SBI/ REC/2/3) which recognized the work of the CMS and other international organizations to advance biodiversity practices by businesses. It also convened the trinational workshop on the establishment of the Marine Turtles Protected Areas Networks (MTPAN) and supported the integration of migratory species in the regional activity plan of the ACB for 2019.

In terms of reporting requirements, reports are submitted every three years. The Philippines' latest submission was in 2017 and the next report is due in 2020.
This Page was updated on 26 December 2019 and will be updated on 10 December 2020
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