Not a Threat: How Vegetation Expansion affecting the pattern of Habitat Used by Migratory Waterbirds at Pantai Cemara, Jambi

EAAFP Small Grant Fund Project by

Cipto Dwi Handono

EKSAI Foundation

Spotted Greenshank (Tringa guttifer) recorded at Pantai Cemara, Jambi during this research (November 2021) © Cipto Dwi Handono


In 2021 EKSAI Foundation received a small grant fund from the EAAFP to evaluate the potential threat of vegetation expansion on the mudflat of Pantai Cemara, Jambi. From the monitoring in 2020, EKSAI Foundation recorded a massive growth of Ipomoea sp., that later identified as Ipomoea pes-carpae together with a decrease of migratory waterbirds number at Pantai Cemara, Jambi.

From 4 days of monitoring and vegetation analysis at Pantai Cemara, Jambi, EKSAI Foundation recorded 35 species of migratory waterbirds and a maximum count of 3.445 birds at Pantai Cemara, Jambi. This result shows a stable number from 2020 which recorded 2.836 birds from 30 species. EKSAI Foundation also recorded two new species that had never been recorded at Pantai Cemara before: Lesser Crested Tern and Broad-billed Sandpiper. Vegetation analysis done by EKSAI Foundation shows that all of the vegetation on site are native species: Ipomoea pes-carpae (the most dominant species on mudflat), Sea-pine, and Avicennia spIpomoea pes-carpae was recorded as invasive in three countries: Spain, Anguilla, and South Africa (Dana, et al., 2020; Connor et al., 2021; and Foxcroft et al., 2020), hence, the result from this monitoring can not prove that ipomoea pes-carpae are invasive and threat the migratory waterbirds community at Pantai Cemara, Jambi.

Despite that result, EKSAI Foundation notices that vegetation growth still affects the birds, especially in migratory waterbirds' habitat use and selection. In fig. 01 : (1), (2), and (3) we can compare the mudflat area used by migratory waterbirds at Pantai Cemara, Jambi in 2019, 2020, and 2021.


Fig 01. (1) Vegetation and migratory waterbird in 2019

Fig 01. (2) Vegetation and migratory waterbird in 2020

Fig 01. (3) Vegetation and migratory waterbird in 2021


From fig 01, we can see that the migratory waterbird flocks are shifting following the vegetation growth to find the remaining open mudflat at Pantai Cemara, Jambi. Together with the vegetation growth, the team of EKSAI Foundation found a new-form mudflat that was used by migratory waterbirds flock in 2021. This new-form mudflat is formed on the southeast side of Pantai Cemara. We need to continuously survey to monitor the vegetation and mudflat at Pantai Cemara, so we can understand the pattern of migratory waterbirds' habitat at Pantai Cemara. This information is very valuable for migratory waterbirds’ habitat management.


  1. The expansion of vegetation especially Ipomoea pes-carpae growth at Pantai Cemara Jambi does not identify as a threat to migratory waterbirds, yet still affects the area used by migratory waterbird flocks at Pantai Cemara, Jambi.
  2. Based on the interview with local people, a large land clearing near Desa Cemara might cause the increase of organic waste in the river and estuary that possibly be a cause of the increase of vegetation growth at Pantai Cemara, Jambi.
  3. During this research, we identify 35 species of migratory waterbirds with a maximum count of total migratory waterbirds is 3.445. This result shows that the migratory waterbirds number from 2020 to 2021 is stable and tends to increase through the vegetation is still growing intensively. The result from this research does not show that the vegetation growth threatened the migratory waterbirds community, but still affects the area used by migratory waterbirds due to the mudflats covered by Ipomoea pes-caprae and other vegetation at Pantai Cemara.
  1. The local government and local agencies responsible for the management of Pantai

Cemara are committed to proposing this area to be a new Flyway Network Site in Indonesia in 2022, our team will help and follow up this commitment and help to

compile the SIS together with all the responsible authorities.


The project was funded through the 2021 EAAFP WG/TF Small Grant Fund. View the report, Click here.

For inquiries, contact Cipto Dwi Handono at [email protected]


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