Bonn Convention | Convention on Migratory Species [UPSC Environment & Ecology Notes]

Bonn Convention is a name of the international treaty on the conservation of migratory species of wild animals, that was adopted in Bonn, Germany in 1979. It came into force in 1983. The convention is simply known as Bonn Convention or CMS (Convention on Conservation of Migratory Species) which is an important part of international environment conventions and protocols. India hosted the CMS COP 13 at Gandhinagar in Gujarat and hence, this article will provide all important facts about the Bonn Convention for the IAS Exam.

The topic, Bonn Convention, is an important segment of the Environment and Ecology syllabus (Mains GS III) of the IAS Exam. Aspirants can prepare the similar important environment conventions by referring to the links below:

What is the aim of the Bonn Convention?

The aim of the Bonn Convention is to protect the migratory species of wild animals and their habitats. It is the only global treaty concerning the migratory species and works under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme. The convention has legally binding agreements and non-legally binding Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) which are tailored according to conservation needs.

Important Facts about the Bonn Convention for UPSC

  1. Bonn Convention is another name to the Convention on Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS.)
  2. The states and the range states from where the migratory species pass are brought together under CMS to enable measures for their conservation and protection.
  3. There are two appendices under the Bonn Convention:
    • Appendix I (Endangered Species)- It comprises the list of those migratory species that are assessed as being in danger of extinction throughout their range or in some significant portion of their range. It also defines endangered species as those with a high risk of extinction in the wild in near future, as also defined by IUCN.
    • Appendix II – It comprises those migratory species that need conservation through international agreements and will significantly benefit from such conservational efforts.
  4. The 51st Meeting of Bonn Convention took place in India alongside CMS COP 13.
  5. ASCOBANS, an acronym for Agreement on the Conservation of Small Cetaceans of the Baltic, North East Atlantic, Irish and North Seas came into force in 2004 under the auspices of Bonn Convention and recently the 9th meeting took place virtually in September 2020. (India is not a party to ASCOBANS.)
  6. The highest numbers of members in the Bonn Convention are from African regions followed by Europe.

Daily News

Members of the Bonn Convention

There are 131 parties under the Bonn Convention. The latest country to ratify CMS is the Central African Republic which has ratified the Bonn Convention on 1st September 2020.

India & CMS

The important points related to India and the Bonn Convention are listed down below:

  1. India has been a part of the Bonn Convention since 1983. Some of the important migratory species in India are:
    • Amur Falcons
    • Bar-headed Geese
    • Black-necked cranes
    • Marine turtles
    • Dugongs
    • Humpback Whales
  2. India will be the President of COP to Bonn Convention till 2023. India recently hosted COP 13 to Bonn Convention in February 2020:
    • The theme of the 13th session of COP to Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals was, “Migratory species connect the planet and together we welcome them home.”
    • The mascot of the CMS COP 13 is Great Indian Bustard (Gibi)
Quick Fact about Great Indian Bustard

  1. India has also launched the National Action Plan for the conservation of migratory species under the Central Asian Flyway.
  2. India had non-legally binding MoUs with the CMS on the conservation and management of Siberian Cranes (1998), Marine Turtles (2007), Dugongs (2008) and Raptors (2016)

The keynotes from the CMS COP-13 are:

  1. Ten migratory species were added to the Bonn Convention.
  2. Out of 10 migratory species that are added into Bonn Convention, seven are added into Appendix I and these are:
    • Asian Elephant (IUCN Status – Endangered)
    • Jaguar (IUCN Status – Near Threatened)
    • Great Indian Bustard (IUCN Status – Critically Endangered)
    • Bengal Florican (IUCN Status – Threatened)
    • Little Bustard (IUCN Status – Near Threatened)
    • Antipodean Albatross (IUCN Status – Endangered)
    • Oceanic White-tip Shark (IUCN Status – Critically Endangered)
  3. Gandhinagar declaration was adopted aiming to send a strong message on the importance of migratory species for a new global biodiversity strategy.

Bonn Convention – UPSC Notes:-Download PDF Here

Aspirants by-now should know about the CMS which is also called Bonn Convention. It is important for both prelims and mains examination. Also, the facts about the convention can be used in Essay papers on topics related to the environment, wildlife protection and similar.

Frequently Asked Questions on Bonn Convention 1979


Q 1. What is the Bonn Convention and what is its importance

Ans. The Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals, also known as the Bonn Convention aims to conserve terrestrial, marine and avian migratory species throughout their range. Its objective is to protect the migratory species of wild animals and their habitats

Q 2. When was the Bonn Convention established?

Ans. CMS or Convention on Conservation of Migratory Species was adopted in 1979 in Bonn, Germany and came into effect on November 1, 1983.

For more on Environment and Ecology preparation, you can check the related links below:

Related Links:

Environment Questions for UPSC Mains GS 3 Environment And Ecology Notes For UPSC – Environment Notes For IAS Preparation
GS 3 Structure, Strategy and Syllabus How to Prepare Environment and Ecology for UPSC?
Topic-Wise GS 3 Questions for UPSC Mains UPSC Syllabus


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