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Location Hungary, Somogy,Zala
Central coordinates 17o 13.00' East  46o 40.00' North
IBA criteria C1, C2, C3, C6
Area 12,072 ha
Altitude 104 - 140m
Year of IBA assessment 2002

Hungarian Ornithological and Nature Conservation Society

Site description Situated south-west of Lake Balaton at the mouth of the Zala river. Originally part of the lake, the site has silted up and reverted to mire. In 1992 51 km2of adjacent agricultural lands were flooded, and open water and extensive reedbeds (Phragmites) and sedgebeds (Carex) are now the main habitat types. Human activities include construction works, angling, fishing and reed-harvesting (`Other' land-use, below).

Key Biodiversity This site is important for breeding herons (Ardeidae) and migratory wildfowl, especially geese. Species of global conservation concern that do not meet IBA criteria: Haliaeetus albicilla (1-2 breeding pairs; 10-15 wintering birds), Crex crex (10-15 breeding pairs). Nationally important for breeding Phalacrocorax carbo (minimum 950 pairs).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Bean Goose Anser fabalis winter  1997-2000  10,000-30,000 individuals  C3  Least Concern 
Greater White-fronted Goose Anser albifrons winter  1997-2000  3,000-8,000 individuals  C3  Least Concern 
Greylag Goose Anser anser winter  1997-2000  800-10,500 individuals  C3  Least Concern 
Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca breeding  1997-2000  40-50 breeding pairs  C1, C6  Near Threatened 
Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula winter  1997-2000  1,250 individuals  C3  Least Concern 
Ixobrychus minutus breeding  1997-2000  75 breeding pairs  C2, C6  Not Recognised 
Eurasian Bittern Botaurus stellaris breeding  1997-2000  20 breeding pairs  C2  Least Concern 
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides breeding  1997-2000  20-25 breeding pairs  C2, C6  Least Concern 
Purple Heron Ardea purpurea breeding  1997-2000  40-50 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Great White Egret Ardea alba breeding  1997-2000  250 breeding pairs  C2, C6  Least Concern 
Pygmy Cormorant Microcarbo pygmaeus breeding  1997-2000  10 breeding pairs  C1, C6  Least Concern 
Western Marsh-harrier Circus aeruginosus breeding  1997-2000  40 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Common Coot Fulica atra winter  1997-2000  30,000 individuals  C3  Least Concern 
Common Tern Sterna hirundo breeding  1997-2000  250-300 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Whiskered Tern Chlidonias hybrida breeding  1997-2000  300 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Black Tern Chlidonias niger breeding  1997-2000  100-200 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Moustached Warbler Acrocephalus melanopogon breeding  1997-2000  30 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Balaton - Felvidéki National Park 57,019 protected area contains site 14,745  
Kis-Balaton Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 14,745 protected area contains site 14,745  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   50%
Artificial - terrestrial   45%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 20%
fisheries/aquaculture 7%
forestry 10%
nature conservation and research 50%
water management 60%
not utilised 5%
other 40%

Protection status National High International High14,745 ha of IBA covered by National Park (Balaton-felvidéki, 56,696 ha). 14,745 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Kis-Balaton, 14,745 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Lake Kis-Balaton. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016

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