General request for information to update African IBA regional directory
The BirdLife Africa Partnership is kindly requesting for submission of new information to update the Regional IBA Directory so that it remains an up-to-date source of information on key sites for biodiversity in Africa. We are particularly looking for information on potential new IBAs as well as updates from existing IBAs. The Regional Directory titled: The Important Bird Areas in Africa and Associated Islands was published by BirdLife in 2001, edited by Fishpool and Evans. The directory is based on contributions from hundreds of people, some from within the BirdLife Partnership in Africa but the majority from outside this Partnership.
This book has been used extensively in the conservation of biodiversity in Africa, mainly as an easy-to-access source of scientifically rigorous information on priority sites for conservation. This information has been used, among others to:
a) Identify new sites requiring legal designation as Protected Areas under national designation. (Partly as a result of documentation of these sites, the number of IBAs with legal protection status has increased from 597 in 2001 to 675 in 2006).
b) Identify new sites requiring legal designation as Protected Areas under international designation. (For example, the number of IBAs that qualify for designation under the Ramsar Convention that have actually been added to the Ramsar List is at least 43 sites since 2001).
c) Advocate for better policies on natural resources management as well as against ill-planned commercial enterprises.
The kind of information required is as follows:
a) Site basic information such as:
· Country name,
· Site name,
· Administrative region(s),
· Location coordinates,
· Area of site,
· major habitats,
· major land uses and
· Protection status, and if partly protected, proportion of overlap.
b) Key birds information, e.g. List of all bird species recorded from the area, including population estimates or relative abundance, whenever possible.
c) Other key biodiversity – threatened and rare species belonging to other taxa
d) Conservation issues including current and future threats and actions being undertaken to address them, and
e) Some references, where people can find more information about the site
IBA criteria and the species that meet criteria for each country can be provided on request. A site datasheet, indicating the kind of information required can be accessed through www.birdlife.org/datazone/sites.
If you are able to provide such information or have ideas on potential sources, please kindly contact firstname.lastname@example.org by 31st May 2008. Further guidance and an excel form customised for your country can be provided upon request.