Birds can help set, meet and track the Aichi biodiversity targets

As part of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011–2020, in 2010 the member states of the Convention on Biological Diversity agreed 20 headline ‘Aichi Biodiversity Targets’. Governments are translating these to the national level through their National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs). Data on birds can help to set targets, focus actions, and monitor success for the conservation of biodiversity.

CBD strategic goals and Aichi Targets: Convention on Biological Diversity. Indicators using bird data: BirdLife International (2012) Developing and implementing National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans: How to set, meet and track the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. Cambridge, UK: BirdLife International.

In October 2010, Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity—comprising nearly all the world’s Governments—adopted the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011–2020. The Strategic Plan provides a comprehensive global framework for achieving the vision of ‘Living in Harmony with Nature’, including the 20 headline Aichi Biodiversity Targets for 2015 or 2020. An essential next step is to translate the Strategic Plan to the national level—through new or revised National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs). CBD Parties have been invited to set their own targets within this flexible framework, taking into account national needs and priorities, while also bearing in mind national contributions to the achievement of the global targets.

For many countries, developing NBSAPs to address the Aichi Targets may not be an easy task. The broad range of actions required must be integrated across economic sectors and coordinated across governments, business and civil society. The information needed for effective planning may often be patchy and incomplete. Birds are better known than any other comparable group of organisms. There is unparalleled information on which species are the closest to extinction, the threats they face, actions needed, and critical sites that need safeguarding. These data can help to focus and target actions to tackle biodiversity loss. Birds create a window into the wider environment. As they are sensitive to environmental change, popular to watch, and relatively easy to monitor, indicators based on bird data are very useful for tracking progress in addressing the biodiversity crisis.

BirdLife is a Partnership of national, membership-based environmental organisations in 120 countries and territories around the world. BirdLife works for a world rich in biodiversity, with people and nature living equitably, sustainably and in harmony. Through a focus on birds, BirdLife acts for nature and for people, sharing perspectives and solutions that are founded on local experience but connect across borders and barriers. The BirdLife Strategy 2013–2020, built around the pillars of species, sites and habitats, sustainability and people, is directly linked to and fully supportive of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity.

To put the BirdLife Strategy into effect, BirdLife Partners work closely with national Governments, supporting efforts to improve conservation policy and action. BirdLife Partners are ideally placed to involve and engage local communities and the wider public, communicating the importance of nature conservation and promoting awareness. BirdLife activities and projects provide numerous practical examples of how particular Aichi Biodiversity Targets can be achieved. As civil society organisations, BirdLife Partners provide a key component of the concerted action needed to implement NBSAPs successfully. Globally, BirdLife is the CBD’s International Thematic Focal Point for birds for the Clearing House Mechanism. BirdLife Partners and the BirdLife Secretariat hold detailed information on birds and make this widely accessible to help national governments, businesses and others to implement and monitor the CBD and its programmes of work.

The BirdLife Data zone  provides access to a wealth of scientific data, including authoritative and up-to-date information on the world’s bird species  and the sites critical to their conservation. Through the Country Profile section, this data can be viewed separately for every country and territory in the world.

State of the world’s birds, of which this case study is part, provides in-depth case studies that detail how bird data can be used to monitor change and set conservation priorities, and highlights successful conservation approaches.

For more information on how this information can aid CBD implementation click here.



Compiled: 2012    Last updated: 2013    Copyright: 2013   

Recommended Citation:
BirdLife International (2013) Birds can help set, meet and track the Aichi biodiversity targets. Downloaded from on 07/12/2023