The number of grey crowned crane population has more than doubled in Rwanda, according to a report presented during biodiversity day at the 27th UN climate change conference in Egypt. The crane population growth has risen following the restoration of different wetlands and crane sanctuaries. One of the crane sanctuaries is called ‘Umusambi village’, in the City of Kigali, a nature reserve and sanctuary for the disabled, rescued Grey Crowned Cranes from captivity. Umusambi village is currently a refuge for rehabilitated cranes and a haven for wetland biodiversity. According to the report, the crane population in Rwanda increased from 487 in 2017 to 1,066 in 2022. The number of cranes was 748 in 2019, 881 in 2020, and 997 in 2021. At COP27, Nyandungu urban eco-tourism wetland where cranes are also found, in the City of Kigali, was also showcased as one of the milestones in wetlands and biodiversity restoration. The park has a medicinal garden, Pope’s Garden, five catchment ponds, three recreational ponds, an information centre, a restaurant and 10 Kilometers of walkways and cycle lanes. The urban eco-tourism park with 70 hectares of wetlands and 50 hectares of forests is home to 62 local plant species and more than 100 bird species. Restoring the wetland has created more than 4,000 jobs for mainly youth and women. At the Convention on Wetlands held in Geneva last week, the City of Kigali was accredited for its commendable measures to protect the City’s wetlands and secure their benefits for People and Nature. The city is also going to restore more five degraded wetlands. Over $12 million has been invested to rehabilitate Gikondo, Rwampara, Rugenge-Rwintare, Nyabugogo and Kibumba wetlands. According to the Kigali urban wetland master plan, over 20 per cent of wetlands in Kigali city - equivalent to 15.76 square Kilometres –should be rehabilitated so as to regain quality and pristine nature. It shows that 29 per cent of the wetlands will be sustainably exploited. These are wetlands which are to be rehabilitated and their ecosystem improved while retaining their existing economic, usage and recreational value but it is recommended to follow sustainable practices. The master plan shows that 50 per cent, or 38.95 square Kilometers must be fully conserved. The master plan developed by the Ministry of Environment indicates that Kigali has 7, 700 hectares or 77 square Kilometers. Rwanda’s biodiversity information system Beth Kaplin, the Director of Centre of Excellence in Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management at the University of Rwanda said that Rwanda’s biodiversity information system has been created to be able to have biodiversity data available for evidence-based decision making. “Intact healthy ecosystems rely on biodiversity and our researchers are identifying new species and biological indicators in Rwanda to better monitor climate adaption interventions,” she said. Rwanda made remarkable achievements in biodiversity conservation from 2016 to 2020 according to the 6th report on the status of implementing the ‘Biological Diversity Convention’. The government set 19 national targets aimed at protecting and conserving biodiversity and ecosystems. Rwanda exceeded projected achievement for one target while 12 targets were on track to be achieved while six targets fell in the ‘insufficient’ category. The target number 1 was possible through tools such environments days Kwita Izina” Baby Gorilla naming ceremonies, radio programs about the value of biodiversity in ecosystems such as Akagera national park and campaign on the plight of the Grey crowned cranes held in captivity and the illegality of the activity This campaign led to the release of 166 cranes in the Park and many others kept in a sanctuary (Umusambi Village) which has led to an increase in the population of the cranes in the wild.