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Location Laos, Phongsali
Central coordinates 102o 17.00' East  22o 3.00' North
IBA criteria A1
Area 126,880 ha
Altitude 500 - 1,900m
Year of IBA assessment 2003

BirdLife Indochina Programme (Country programme)



Site description The IBA comprises the upper Nam Ou and its catchment, within Phou Dendin National Protected Area in northern Lao P.D.R. The topography of the IBA is mountainous, with the highest elevations being in the north-east of the IBA, along the international border with Vietnam. Large parts of the IBA, particularly along the Nam Ou above the confluence with the Nam Khang, are uninhabited, and the slopes flanking the river support unbroken dry evergreen forest (Duckworth et al. 1998). The IBA has only been the focus of a few brief surveys, which were constrained by time limitations and inclement weather. As a result, insufficient ornithological information is available to characterise the bird communities of the IBA (Thewlis et al. 1998). However, the available data indicate that the Nam Ou and its tributaries are important for a number of riverine species, including Blyth's Kingfisher Alcedo hercules, Crested Kingfisher Megaceryle lugubris, Lesser Fish Eagle Ichthyophaga humilis and Brown Dipper Cinclus pallasii (Duckworth et al. 1998). Although small numbers of River Lapwing Vanellus duvaucelii have been recorded at the IBA (Thewlis et al. 1998), given the lack of suitable habitat, it is unlikely that the IBA is of high importance for the conservation of sandbar-nesting birds (Duckworth et al. 1998). The available data from forest habitats indicate that the IBA supports Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis, Brown Hornbill Anorrhinus tickelli and Rufous-necked Hornbill Aceros nipalensis (Duckworth et al. 1998). However, given the high hunting pressure believed to be operating and the relative isolation of the IBA from other significant areas of suitable habitat, it is not certain that the IBA can support populations, at least of the two larger species, that are viable in the long term.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Lineated Barbet Psilopogon lineatus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Green-legged Partridge Arborophila chloropus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Grey Peacock-pheasant Polyplectron bicalcaratum breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Bar-backed Partridge Arborophila brunneopectus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Silver Pheasant Lophura nycthemera breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Blyth's Kingfisher Alcedo hercules resident  2001  uncommon  A3  Near Threatened 
Austen's Brown Hornbill Anorrhinus austeni resident  2001  frequent  A3  Near Threatened 
Rufous-necked Hornbill Aceros nipalensis resident  2001  rare  A1, A3  Vulnerable 
Bay Woodpecker Blythipicus pyrrhotis breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-winged Pitta Pitta moluccensis breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Maroon Oriole Oriolus traillii breeding  2001  uncommon  A3  Least Concern 
Brown-breasted Bulbul Pycnonotus xanthorrhous breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Sooty-headed Bulbul Pycnonotus aurigaster breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-eyed Bulbul Iole propinqua breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Asian Black Bulbul Hypsipetes leucocephalus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Pale-footed Bush-warbler Cettia pallidipes breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-vented Warbler Phylloscopus cantator winter  2001  unknown  A2  Least Concern 
Chinese Hwamei Garrulax canorus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-headed Parrotbill Paradoxornis gularis breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Red-billed Scimitar-babbler Pomatorhinus ochraceiceps breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Greater Necklaced Laughingthrush Garrulax pectoralis breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-cheeked Fulvetta Alcippe morrisonia breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Indochinese Yuhina Yuhina torqueola breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Slaty-backed Forktail Enicurus schistaceus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Hainan Blue-flycatcher Cyornis hainanus breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Orange-bellied Leafbird Chloropsis hardwickii breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Streaked Spiderhunter Arachnothera magna breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Spot-winged Grosbeak Mycerobas melanozanthos breeding  2001  unknown  A3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Phou Dene Din National Biodiversity Conservation Area 222,000 protected area contains site 126,880  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest   -
Wetlands (inland)   -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
nature conservation and research -

Other biodiversity The Hmong headman of Ban Than reported Lepopard P. pardus is common in the NBCA (possibly in IBA as well). (Robichaud and Sounthala 1995)Robichaud and Sounthala (1995) concluded that Rhesus Macaque Macaca mulatta was common in the area of Protected Area and saw three separated along Nam Ou, thus this species of Primate may occur in the IBA area. They also suggested that the habitat of IBA is suitable for gibbons.Robichaud and Sounthala (1995) found the tracks of Asian Elephant, probably three or few individuals along Nam Ou a few kilometers downstream of Nam Toho mouth and found the dropping nearby.

Further web sources of information 

Site account from Important Bird Areas in Lao P.D.R. (Ounekham and Inthapatha 2003)

References Duckworth, J. W., Salter, R. E. and Khounboline, K. eds. (1999) Wildlife in Lao P.D.R.: 1999 status report. Vientiane: IUCN, WCS and CPAWM.Duckworth, J. W., Tizard, R. J., Timmins, R. J., Thewlis, R. M., Robichaud, W. B. and Evans, T. D. (1998) Bird records from Laos, October 1994-August 1995. Forktail 13: 33-68 (including errata sheet distributed with Forktail 14).Thewlis, R. M., Timmins, R. J., Evans, T. D. and Duckworth, J. W. (1998) The conservation status of birds in Laos: a review of key species. Bird Conserv. Internat. 8(suppl.): 1-159.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Phou Dendin. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/10/2014

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