Farewell to Yeonah Ku, External Relations Specialist of EAAFP Secretariat

11th Meeting of Partners (2023) © EAAFP Secretariat

Over the past three years, from June 2020 to May 2023, I had the privilege of working at the EAAFP Secretariat, making meaningful contributions to various projects. As a Local Project Coordinator (Jun 2020 – Jan 2023) and External Relations Specialist (Feb – May 2023).

From my early experiences to my recent endeavors, I have dedicated myself to the field of conservation and sustainable development. Beginning with my study background in biology and ecology, I have pursued my passion for protecting our natural world and promoting sustainable practices. This passion took root during my junior year of university in 2009 when I first delved into the realm of wetlands and waterbirds, gaining a deeper understanding of the Ramsar Convention and the East Asian – Australasian Flyway.

Building upon this foundation, I joined the EAAFP Secretariat in 2018 as a Communication Specialist for six months (Article), where I further developed my abilities in effectively conveying the importance of conservation efforts. I have immersed myself in various projects within the realm of sustainable development, conservation, and energy plan policy.

During my tenure as the Local Project Coordinator, I spearheaded two crucial projects in the RO Korea: the "Collaboration on Conservation of the Hwaseong Wetlands" (2020 – 2022) and the "Incheon-Hong Kong Conservation Project on Migratory Waterbirds and their Habitats" (2022 – 2023).

International Symposium for the Hwaseong Wetlands (2021) © EAAFP Secretariat

A Discussion for Sustainable Development of the Hwaseong Wetlands (2022) © KFEM Hwaseong

The "Collaboration on Conservation of the Hwaseong Wetlands" encompassed a range of activities, including international symposia, communication with local stakeholders, ecological surveys, training programs for locals, public awareness events, and the formulation of management strategies. Notably, I played a significant role in crafting proposals and reports such as “Wise Use of the Hwaseong Wetlands Flyway Network Site: 2020 Final Report”, “The Proposal for the Management Directions for the Sustainable use of the Hwaseong Wetlands”, and “A Vision for the Hwaseong Wetlands”.

  • See the overview article: Activities of the EAAFP Secretariat for Hwaseong Wetlands Conservation Projects 2020-2022 (link)

the 3rd Incheon-Hong Kong International East Asian-Australasian Black-faced Spoonbill Conservation Cooperation Forum (2023) © EAAFP Secretariat

The "Incheon-Hong Kong Conservation Project on Migratory Waterbirds and their Habitats" focused on waterbird surveys, Black-faced Spoonbill census, communication and education efforts, and organizing international forums. Through this project, we achieved remarkable milestones, including record-breaking Black-faced Spoonbill populations, strengthened collaborations between Incheon and Hong Kong, and the launch of educational initiatives. These accomplishments are showcased through various articles, reports, and videos that highlight the significance of our conservation efforts.

  • 2020 Black-faced Spoonbill Census Results showed Black-faced Spoonbills population hits record high (link)
  • 1st forum: Incheon-Hong Kong International East Asian – Australasian Flyway Black-faced Spoonbill Conservation Cooperation Forum (link)
  • 2nd forum: Stronger working relationship between Incheon and Hong Kong to conserve Black-faced Spoonbill (link)
  • 3rd forum: Move forward for Black-faced Spoonbill Conservation in EAAF (link)
  • A Tale of Black-faced Spoonbill Linking Two Cities – Launch of Incheon-Hong Kong Sister Site Agreement video (link)
  • World Migratory Bird Day: WWF collaborates with EAAPF to Launch an Updated Education Pack “Lolo Flying Journey” about Black-faced Spoonbill (link)
  • Linking environmental educators from Hong Kong and Incheon for conservation of migratory waterbirds (link)
  • Report of monitoring of migratory waterbirds 2021 – 2022 at the Songdo Tidal Flat Flyway Network Site in Ro Korea (link)


I am immensely grateful for the collaborative spirit demonstrated by diverse sectors within and beyond the EAAFP. It was through our combined efforts that we achieved these remarkable outcomes. Additionally, I had the privilege of supporting communication with Korean governments and civil societies on various conservation matters, drawing upon my network and experience.

  • Conservation of migratory birds and their habitats along the Han River Estuary, Ro Korea (link)
  • At the Nakdong Estuary FNS, river flowing freely for the first time in 35 years (link)
  • Special Exhibition on Shorebirds of Nakdong Estuary, Ro Korea (link)
  • First Upo Wetland Symposium held to promote harmony between birds and people (link)
  • Confirmation of important sites for Scaly-sided Merganser in Ro Korea (link)
  • Scaly-Sided Merganser- Workshop in Suncheon (external link from HSS)
  • Conference on Management of Flyways in Asia (link)
  • EAAFP Secretariat visited Partner and Flyway Network Site in New Zealand (link)


As the External Relations Specialist, I also played an essential role in managing sponsorships and corporate engagement for the 11th Meeting of Partners (MOP11) and other external relations projects. Our endeavors fostered fruitful partnerships and showcased the profound impact of collaboration between humans and nature.

  • MOP11 sponsor page (link)
  • Corporate engagement page (link)
  • EAAFP leads happy companionship of humans and nature through the Ulsan Symposium for Migratory Birds (link)

Looking back on my time at the EAAFP Secretariat, I am proud of the accomplishments we achieved together. My journey here has solidified my passion for wetlands and waterbirds, which first ignited during my junior year of university when I discovered the Ramsar Convention and the East Asian – Australasian Flyway. As I transition from this role and embark on new opportunities, I am eager to continue making a meaningful impact in the conservation and sustainable development realm.

If you would like to connect with me or discuss potential collaborations, please feel free to reach out to me at [[email protected]].

Thank you for being a part of this incredible journey, and let's continue our collective efforts in safeguarding our precious natural heritage.

Warm regards,

Yeonah Ku


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