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April 1, 2011

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Water bird numbers dip over habitat loss

THE number of water birds in Shanghai is plunging, the Shanghai Greenery and Public Sanitation Administrative Bureau said yesterday.

Last year the number of birds reached about 150,000, dropping from more than 200,000 in 2006.

Bird populations dropped in eight of the 10 sites officials have monitored, with the number of ducks, geese, swans and shorebirds declining the most, officials said.

They added that the condition at Jiuduansha Wetland was especially serious due to declining environmental conditions.

Officials said habitat loss was the biggest reason for the drop as most of the city's coastal areas have been turned into farmland in the past five years.

The intrusion of wild plants into habitats and illegal hunting is also a problem, officials said.


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