April Update of the WDPA

The total number of protected area records in the April 2017 release of the WDPA is 233,620 comprising of 214,952 polygons and 18,668 points.

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Belgium: Partial update of IUCN Management Categories. IUCN management categories for all Natura 2000 records have been updated from 'Not Reported' to IUCN category 'IV'. Refer to 'Updates' for further detail on the changes.

Cartagena Specially Protected Areas: Incorporation of a comprehensive list of 'Specially Protected Areas' designated under the Cartagena Convention (Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region). This update marks the fourth UN Environment Regional Seas Convention to be fully represented in the WDPA. There are currently 31 protected area records spanning 15 countries, all of which have defined spatial boundaries.

Jersey: Complete update of protected area data for Jersey including the addition of 15 protected areas and updating 11 existing sites.

State of Palestine – Addition of 51 protected area records for the State of Palestine, marking the first time this area has been represented in the WDPA. The newly included records are designated as 'Nature reserves' and have defined spatial boundaries. The data were provided by the Director of the Environmental Resources Directorate with support from the Hans Seidel Foundation. Further collaboration is planned with this data provider during 2017 to improve the quality of the data provided in the attribute table

Ramsar Sites, Wetlands of International Importance – Partial update to Ramsar sites, including 49 points converted to polygons following the provision of spatial boundaries by the Ramsar Sites Information Service and updates from relevant national inventories of protected areas. A further 16 Ramsar sites in France were updated based on national inventories of protected areas.


Update type



Point converted to polygon









Cartagena Specially Protected Areas
0 6
0 0
Jersey Complete 15 3 11 0 0 0 0
Ramsar Sites, Wetlands of International Importance Partial 0
0 0 1
State of Palestine
Partial 51
0 0 0 0 0 0
Tanzania Partial 7 0 0 0 0 0 0

Added:New feature added in the WDPA (ie. a new WDPAID was created)

Removed : Number of feature removed from the WDPA (ie. a WDPAID was removed from the database)

Updated : Modifications/updates of the geometry or some attributes of existing feature in the WDPA (ie. a feature with an existing WDPAID.

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WDPA Manual

WDPA User Manual: We are pleased to announce that the WDPA User Manual has been translated into French and Spanish. Additionally, the Manual has been updated with an appendix on WDPA Data Contributor Agreements (Appendix 2), and has undergone general updates and edits based on user feedback. Version 1.4 of the User Manual is now available in three languages through the geodatabase download above and via the following links:

English: http://wcmc.io/WDPA_Manual

French: http://wcmc.io/WDPA_Manual_FR

Spanish: http://wcmc.io/WDPA_Manual_ES

Summary of current data in preparation:

The data set status is defined as either:
1) New data set received, 2) Under review by UNEP-WCMC, 3) Under validation by data provider or 4) Final approval stages.

Under validation by data provider

Data Set Status
Anguilla New data set received
Lebanon New data set received
New Caledonia Under review by UNEP-WCMC
Natura 2000 Under review by UNEP-WCMC
Argentina (provincial-level protected areas) Under validation by data provide
Bahamas Under validation by data provide
Bolivia Under validation by data provide
Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba Under validation by data provide
British Virgin Islands Under validation by data provide
Colombia Final approval stages
Ecuador Final approval stages
UNESCO Man and Biosphere reserves Final approval stages

The use of the monthly release data is bound by the Terms and Conditions of Use of the WDPA.