Hizen Kashima-higata

Great Blue-spotted Mudskipper
The south side of Hizen Kashima-higata
The north side of Hizen Kashima-higata
The east side of Hizen Kashima-higata
Saunders's Gull
Overview at low tide

Hizen Kashima-higata

  • Country: 
  • Site number: 
  • Area: 
    57 ha
  • Designation date: 
  • Coordinates: 
    33°06'N 130°07'E
Materials presented on this website, particularly maps and territorial information, are as-is and as-available based on available data and do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area, or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.


Hizen Kashima-higata is a tidal mudflat at the mouths of Shiota River and Kashima River on the western shore of the Ariake Bay. Although the Site is part of the Central Kuroshio Current biogeographical region, the water is brackish rather than marine because it is about 100 km away from the mouth of the Bay. The Site is internationally important in the life cycle of migratory waterbirds, acting as an important stopover and wintering site for globally threatened species such as the endangered black-faced spoonbill (Platalea minor),and the vulnerable Saunders’s gull (Chroicocephalus saundersi) and far eastern curlew (Numenius madagascariensis). It hosts more than 1% of the flyway populations of Saunders’s gull, black-faced spoonbill and whimbrel (Numenius phaeopus). The mudflat has a rich biodiversity, including fish, benthos, and halophytes, due to the warm climate, large tidal variation, and shoals which facilitate sediment deposition. Over the years, the extensive mudflats around the Ariake Bay have been subjected to land reclamation and the construction of dykes. As a result, Hizen Kashima-higata, together with the two other coastal Ramsar Sites in Ariake Bay, Arao-higata and Higashiyoka-higata, has an increasingly important role in biodiversity conservation in the Bay. Hizen Kashima-higata is also important for supporting the livelihood of the local communities and for its cultural value that stems from traditional fishing and recreational activities.

Administrative region: 
Kashima City, Saga Prefecture, Kyushu Okinawa Area

  • National legal designation: 
    • Special Protection Area of National Wildlife Protection Area - Hizen Kashima-higata Special Protection Area within Hizen Kashima-higata National Wildlife Protection Area
  • Regional (international) legal designations: 
    • Other international designation
  • Last publication date: 


Ramsar Information Sheet (RIS)