The Ramsar Convention, adopted in 1971 in the town of Ramsar, Iran, established a basis for action at a national and international level for the protection and proper management of wetlands and their resources. Today the Ramsar Convention has 160 signatories – countries from all over the world – and the Ramsar List contains 1904 wetlands covering a total of 186,5 million hectares.
Wetlands are centres of biological diversity and habitats for a variety of specific flora and fauna. They are of vital importance for the conservation of rare and endangered species of bird which rely on habitats close to water. However, these regions are also of exceptional importance for humans, in many respects directly impacting their survival.
The UNESCO list of wetlands of international significance – protected under the Ramsar Convention – includes nine Ramsar Sites in Serbia, covering a total of 53,714 hectares: Obedska Bara, Ludaško Jezero, Carska Bara – Stari Begej, Zasavica, Slano Kopovo, Vlasina, Gornje Podunavlje, Labudovo Okno and Peštersko Polje.