due to a lack o data on range and population size(both global and local), endemic species were usedas a proxy or restricted-range species.
Criterion 3: Congregatory species
KBAs basedon this criterion hold a signifcant proportion(provisionally set at 1%) o the global populationo a congregatory species, defned as a species thatgathers in large numbers at specifc sites duringsome stage in their lie cycle (or example, breed-ing aggregations).
Identiying and Delineating KBAs in thePhilippines
KBA identifcation in the Philippines is based on the117 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) identifed or the coun-try by the Haribon Foundation and Birdlie International,and the 206 Conservation Priority Areas (CPAs) identifedthrough the Philippine Biodiversity Conservation Prior-ity-setting Program. The main challenge in identiyingKBAs was to refne the results o these previous initiatives,specifcally, to incorporate data or threatened and restrict-ed-range species o reshwater fshes, amphibians, reptiles,birds, and mammals so as to document the presence o these species in existing sites and to identiy new KBAs where needed. The 2004 IUCN Red List provided the listo threatened species or the country, as well as data onconservation status, distribution, threats, key contacts, andreerences. Additional data, especially point locality dataor each species, were obtained rom the published litera-ture, experts/scientists, and museum collections.Spatial data used to delineate KBA boundaries includedavailable point localities and distribution inormation orspecies, IBA and CPA polygons, inormation on habitattype and extent, settlement patterns, topography, andprotected area (PA) boundaries. In some cases, existingIBA, CPA, or PA boundaries did not have to be modifedin delineating the KBAs, since data or the target speciesell within the boundaries o the original site. In othercases, existing IBA or PA boundaries were modifed asneeded to incorporate nearby habitat or target species, toomit highly developed areas, and generally to incorporatethe best available land cover and land use data. AdditionalKBAs were based solely on the confrmed presence o tar-get species, and delineated using relevant habitat and landcover data.Experts reviewed the preliminary KBAs during severalinormal meetings, and modifcations to the boundaries were made based on their recommendations. Since KBA identifcation and delineation is an iterative process, theboundaries can be modifed and new KBAs added as newdata become available. For instance, data or plant speciesare currently being incorporated. A total o 128 KBAs were identifed or 209 globally threatened, and 419 endemic species o reshwater fshes,amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals, as well as or62 species o congregatory birds. All species protectedthrough the Wildlie Act (Republic Act 9147) are repre-sented within at least one KBA. The KBAs cover a total o 6,008,813 hectares or approximately 20% o the total landarea o the Philippines. Currently, 45 o the 128 KBAs(35%) beneft rom ofcial saeguard status in the Philip-pines, having been ormally established as protected areasunder the legal ramework o the National Integrated Pro-tected Areas System Act (Republic Act 7586). The remain-ing 83 KBAs (65%) lack ormal governmental protection. Areas that are suspected to be important, but or which we have no conclusive data to satisy KBA criteria weredesignated as
. These include sites thathave habitat suitable or target species, but that have notyet been surveyed, as well as sites with only historicaldata or target species. Candidate KBAs are priorities orresearch; i new data or surveys confrm the presence o target species within these sites, they too will become pri-orities or conservation action (KBAs). Forest cover datahave been very useul in identiying candidate KBAs, andhelp to support a precautionary management approach insome areas (e.g., prohibition o development or logging). A total o 51 candidate KBAs have been identifed or thePhilippines. The survival o many target species, particu-larly Critically Endangered and highly restricted rangespecies, may depend on confrming the status o thesecandidate KBAs.Given that unding or conservation investment is limited,and given that some KBAs require saeguarding moreurgently than others, it may be useul to prioritize amongstthe 128 sites identifed to date. However, a large amounto additional biological and socioeconomic data wouldbe required to undertake a thorough and accurate priori-tization based on irreplaceability and vulnerability. Also,dierent stakeholders may have slightly varying priorities.Thus, a ull-scale prioritization has not been attempted.Nevertheless, a subset o sites does emerge as the very highest priorities. These sites are termed Alliance or ZeroExtinction (AZE) sites. The AZE is a consortium o over50 conservation organizations worldwide, devoted to con-serving sites that are the last remaining strongholds or oneor more Critically Endangered or Endangered species. Theloss o an AZE site would result in the extinction o one ormore species, making these extremely urgent priorities orconservation. Ten AZE sites have been identifed or thePhilippines (see KBA matrix).