The Ramsar Convention on wetlands

February 2 is internationally recognised as World Wetlands Day. The day recognises the importance of the Ramsar Convention on wetlands, signed in Ramsar, Iran in 1971.

The international theme for World Wetlands Day 2011 is "wetlands and forests - forests for water and wetlands" in celebration of the United Nations International Year of Forests.

Forests play a crucial role in the hydrological cycle and as a consequence, in the health of wetlands. Forested wetlands, include habitats such as mangroves, nipah swamps, freshwater swamp forests, forested peatlands and seasonally flooded forests. These wetlands are important as they deliver significant ecosystem services, are cradles of biological diversity, and support populations of birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates.

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