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Location Palestinian Authority Territories, Jericho
Central coordinates 35o 27.20' East  31o 42.75' North
IBA criteria A4iv, B1iv, B2, B3
Area 2,500 ha
Year of IBA assessment 1999

Palestine Wildlife Society

Site description It is a protected region and wetland area, which contains a lot of fresh and salt springs, it is near Jerico city, which is the oldest city in the world. The Dead Sea located in the south part of this region and which is considered as the lowest area in the world. There are beautiful green areas between the water of the Dead Sea and Jerusalem Wilderness, which make borders to separate between the water of the Dead Sea and the mountains. The world Fashkha mains crack or split, the reason for this name return to one top of Jerusalem mountains, it fell in the Dead Sea in the past, so this name - Al Fashkha - attributed to this area at which, there is no place for any body to stand on. The level of the Sea water declined between the 1937 and 1930 to 4 m, between 1957 and 1963 it declined about 3.5m. As a result of the water declination the width of the protection region become wider , in addition to the dryness that Jordanian and Israeli authorities and companies create in this region to take use of the mineral wealth that this Sea contains. The Dead Sea depends on the rainfall water that reaches to the sea through Wadi Qadroun, Wadi Al- Darajeeh, and Wadi Sowaneet. On the extension of northern borders of the Dead Sea from the west side there are three springs which are: Al-Gazal spring, Tanour spring, Al-Fashkha springs, the average of the these springs drainage reach to 3million meter. The oasis of Al-Fashkha extended in a distance of 1400m and 5km in order to reach the Dead Sea in several sites. This region is considered one of the less area in Palestine that contains wide distances of plants that exist in the wetland and which also contains springs in addition to tourism retreat.

Key Biodiversity The oasis of Al-Fashkha springs is considered as an important location for the emigrant and the water birds, because this oasis is located on the flying line during the transferring of emigrants birds and there return to the three continents which are: Asia, Europe, and Africa. The species that are found in this area are: Lapwing, Robin, the Warblers, in addition to Chukar. This area is considered as one of wetlands for emigrant and resident birds that belong to the Dead Sea region itself. It is noticed the existence of the Dead Sea sparrow that is threatened that is found in this area in a very special way, and the Lesser Kestrel that is founded in the mountainous area that scope of view on the Dead Sea from the western part. The Night Heron, at which it is considered one of the birds that started to stay and breed in this area. The Griffon Vulture also exists in the western part of Al-Fashkha springs and on the mountains that are scope of view on the Dead Sea. Finally there is the White Stork that emigrates through the area in large amounts.

Non-bird biodiversity: This region is famous by the Ibex and, Gazzella, Rocky Hyrax, and the wolf. There are also several species of fishes and crustacea that are found in the spring water.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Dead Sea Sparrow Passer moabiticus winter  1991  2,000 individuals  poor  B3  Least Concern 
Dead Sea Sparrow Passer moabiticus passage  1991  2,000 individuals  poor  B3  Least Concern 
Cinereous Bunting Emberiza cineracea passage  1991  1-4 individuals  poor  B2  Near Threatened 
A4iv Species group - soaring birds/cranes passage  1991  min 20,000 individuals  poor  A4iv, B1iv   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Ain Al-Fashka Nature Reserve 2,500 is identical to site 2,500  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   major
Desert   major
Artificial - terrestrial   -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
rangeland/pastureland major
agriculture minor
tourism/recreation minor
nature conservation and research 100%

Protection status The protection area consisting in a coast which is located near a long road in the western part of the Dead Sea and Al-Fashkha springs that is near Jerusalem Wilderness, its decline from the Sea level is between 380-400m below the sea level.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Ein Al-Fashkha. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016

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