An environmental-impact report on a proposed rail link that would cut through Hong Kong's most valuable bird sanctuary outside of Mai Po is deeply flawed, an expert in the field said yesterday. And an executive summary ignored some of the report's findings on Long Valley, near Sheung Shui, said BirdLife International's Ross Hughes, a former environmental consultant to the British Government. Mr Hughes will submit an independent assessment ahead of a deadline on public consultation on Tuesday. The report, paid for by the KCRC, was published a month ago. Long Valley, a 25-hectare freshwater wetland, would be cut in two by the proposed 7.4km KCRC spur line linking Sheung Shui with the planned Lok Ma Chau border station. Green groups said it would destroy the flood plain, which is home to 210 species of birds, about 12 of which are threatened or near extinction. The executive summary 'does not mention the global and local natural importance of the wetland and the birds in it', Mr Hughes said. The Kowloon-Canton Railway yesterday put out a brochure to justify going ahead with its rail plan, which is awaiting government approval. Mitigation includes fencing off 28.5 hectares of fishponds for birds disturbed by construction, and 7.5 hectares of wetlands nearby set aside to compensate for 1.7 hectares of Long Valley expected to be lost to the transport project. A coalition of green groups and research institutes have appealed to Chief Executive Tung Chee-hwa to preserve Long Valley from development.