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Coastal Area 14802 Central and northern coast of Okinawajima Island

Basic Information A separate window opensReferences

Relevant municipalities Uruma, Ie, Ginoza, Kin, Kunigami, Nakijin, Ogimi, Hibachi, Motobu, Nago, Okinawa Prefecture
Area (km2) 1151

Reason(s) for selection A separate window opensCriteria

Selected due to high levels for the criteria 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7 and 8, and selected by MARXAN software.

Characteristics A separate window opensReferences

These waters extend from the Kunisaki Peninsula on the west side of Okinawa Island and Iejima Island along the Yanbaru Coast in the north to Kin Bay on the east coast. The coast of the sea extending in front of Sesoko Island is home to sea grass and seaweed beds where Halophila ovalis and Halophila minor (Halophila decipiens) grow, and the coral reefs around Minna Island are fringing reefs with a high level of diversity of species. In the vicinity of Yagaji-jima, including the Haneji Inlet, are sea grass and seaweed beds, tidal mud flats, and mangrove forests. This mangrove forest ecosystem is highly diverse, with Kandelia obovata and black mangrove growing here (Ministry of the Environment, 2001). The Haneji Inlet is home to highly diverse rare conch species, including the only habitat in Japan for Azorinus scheepmakeri and the only habitat in the world for Ditiropisena sp. (Ministry of the Environment, 2001). The endangered species dugong has been confirmed to live here as well (Ministry of the Environment, 2006). The Yagaji area also is a breeding ground for roseate tern and black-naped tern. Snipe and plover also visit here. On the east coast, mangrove forests have developed in the vicinity of Kesaji, in Oura Bay, and in the areas of the mouths of the Kinbaru and Okukubi rivers, where Kandelia obovata, black mangrove, and Rhizophora mucronata grow. The Kesaji mangrove forest is home to four new species of brackish-water Alpheus brevicristatus and numerous species of fish including Periophthalmus argentilineatus, mudskippers, and others. Living in the mangrove forests of Oura Bay are numerous turreted nerite, Nerita undata, Angustassiminea sp., カタシイノミミガイ, Platyvindex sp. and others. The east coast of Okinawa Island from Henoko to Kanna is lined by a series of coral-reef waters and sea grass and seaweed beds, with large communities of Syringodium isoetifolium, Cymodocea serrulata, Cymodocea rotundata and others, and dugong are sited in these waters frequently. The seaweed beds unfolding off the northeast coast of Okinawa Island are green turtle feeding grounds. There also are expansive sea grass and seaweed beds in Nakagusuku Bay, where dugong also have been confirmed to live (Ministry of the Environment, 2001; Ministry of the Environment, 2006 ). In Kin Bay a soft bottom environment has developed from the sandy sea floor to the muddy floor, where diverse fish populations including numerous unique fish, centered on gobies, are being identified (Suzuki et al, 1996; Suzuki et al, 1999; Suzuki et al, 2011).

Environment / Habitat infromation A separate window opensData source

Tidal mud flats (km2) 5.2
Moba (seaweed bed) (km2) 4.5
Coral reef coverage (km2) 52.2
Natural coast (km) 212.1
Rate of natural coast (%) 60.8
Sand bank / submerged sand bank
Other habitats Mangroves

Species information (*) A separate window opensData source

Criteria 1
Dugong dugon (Dugong )
Upogebia sakaii
Tmethypocoelis choreutes
Ptychognathus capillidigitatus
<Bivalva, Gastropoda>
Lepirodes takii
Assimineidae gen. sp.
Cyclina sinensis
Platevindex sp.
Cassidula plecotrematoides japonica
<Other invertebrate>
Paranthus sociatus
Criteria 2
Megaptera novaeangliae (Humpback whale)
Dugong dugon (Dugong )
Monticola solitarius (Blue Rock-thrush)[Br/Ne]
Sterna sumatrana (Black-naped Tern)
Sterna sumatrana (Black-naped Tern)[Br/Ne]
Egretta sacra (Pacific Reef-egret)[Br/Ne]
Sterna albifrons (Little Tern)
Sterna albifrons (Little Tern)[Br/Ne]
Charadrius dubius (Little Ringed Plover)[Br/Ne]
Sterna dougallii (Roseate Tern)
Sterna dougallii (Roseate Tern)[Br/Ne]
Pandion haliaetus (Osprey)[Br/Ne]
Criteria 3
Dugong dugon (Dugong )
Sterna sumatrana (Black-naped Tern)
Sterna albifrons (Little Tern)
Sterna dougallii (Roseate Tern)
Emydocephalus ijimae (Ijima's Sea Snake)
Rhincodon typus
Hypseleotris cyprinoides (Tropical carp-gudgeon)
Acanthogobius insularis
Parasesarma plicatum
Upogebia sakaii
Ilyoplax pusilla
Uca boninensis
Thalassograpsus harpax
<Bivalva, Gastropoda>
Stenomelania costellaris
Pitar sulfreum
Serratina diaphana
Batillaria zonalis
Azorinus scheepmakeri
Cyclina sinensis
Cerithideopsilla djadjariensis
Laemodonta siamensis
Cerithium coralium
Cassidula plecotrematoides japonica
Stenomelania uniformis
Geloina fissidens
Littorina brevicula
Detracia sp. 
Mactra pulchella
Onchidium sp.
Cylindrotis quadrasi
Auriculastra duplicata
Tellinella virgata
Glauconome angulata
Tellinides timorensis
Terebralia sulcata
Mactra grandis
Geloina expansa
<Other invertebrate>
Paranthus sociatus
Acropora aspera
Acropora palmerae
Pachyseris rugosa
Pavona decussata
Pavona venosa
Criteria 4
Dugong dugon (Dugong )
Acabaria japonica
Annella ornata
Annella reticulata
Anthogorgia bocki
Bebryce boninensis
Carijoa riisei
Ceeceenus quadrus
Ellisella andamanensis
Junceella fragilis
Menella praelonga
Parisis minor
Sarcophyton cinereum
Sarcophyton elegans
Subergorgia appressa
Subergorgia suberosa
Criteria 7
<Bivalva, Gastropoda>
Pitar sulfreum
Serratina diaphana
Batillaria zonalis
Neritodryas subsulcata
Clithon sowerbianus
Neritina pulligera
Neritina turrita
Neritina plumbea
Tellinella virgata
Clithon chlorostoma
Pinna bicolor
Nerita planospira
Neripteron sp. 
Cerithidea rhizophorarum
Cerithideopsilla cingulata
Neritina variegata
Truncatella pfeifferi
<Vascular Plants>
Cymodocea rotundata
Criteria 8
<Natural Monuments>
Gesashi Bay mangrove forest <Gesaji-wan no hirgui-rin (in Japanese)>

* This is the species list of which meet the criteria. In that matter, this list does not include all species that inhabit the individual area.
Abbreviation in the information is as follows.
[Br/Ne] : Adjacent water of breeding area or nesting site
[Sp] : spawning area
[Ad] : species not used for analysis but add to the list because inhabit information was collected later
[Ex] : species used for analysis but considered to be possibly extinct in the EBSA region (area)
No mark : data of species distribution


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