Toondah Harbour in Moreton Bay, Queensland, supports more than 40 species of migratory and resident shorebirds, including the world's largest migratory shorebird – the Critically Endangered Eastern Curlew. Moreton Bay is listed under the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, an international treaty that aims to protect the most important wetlands in the world. Every year, Moreton Bay is home to over 40,000 migratory shorebirds who have flown all the way from their breeding grounds in the Arctic.
Historical development and increasing human population around Moreton Bay has significantly reduced the availability of undisturbed feeding and roosting habitat for migratory shorebirds in Moreton Bay. A proposed development for Toondah Harbour could further reduce the availability of feeding and roosting habitat of the Eastern Curlew and other shorebird species. Also of great concern, the proposed development footprint includes over 40 hectares of the Moreton Bay Ramsar site. As the most important wetlands in the world, Ramsar wetlands should never be developed. If the proposed development at Toondah Harbour is approved, it will set a dangerous precedent for future protection of Ramsar-listed wetlands in Australia and around the world.
BirdLife is calling on the Australian government to uphold its obligations under the Ramsar Convention and reject the current Toondah Harbour development proposal.
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Photo credit: Maythee Voranisarakul, Duade Paton & Ian Wilson