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Location France, Champagne-Ardenne
Central coordinates 4o 22.00' East  48o 18.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii, B1i, B1iv, B2, C2, C3, C4, C5, C6
Area 35,800 ha
Altitude 120 - 200m
Year of IBA assessment 2000

Ligue Pour La Protection des Oiseaux

Site description A lake surrounded by wet meadows, woodland, hedges, grassland and arable land. Human activities include agriculture, forestry, cattle-raising, hunting and recreation (including sailing).

Key Biodiversity This is an important site for migrating and wintering waterbirds and the most important wintering site for Grus grus in France. The site holds 20,000 or more waterbirds on passage and in winter, on a regular basis (including Podiceps cristatus, 4,000 (passage); Anser fabalis 2,000 (passage); Anas crecca 3,000 (passage), 3,309 (winter); Anas platyrhynchos 10,000 (passage); Aythya ferina 2,500 (passage); Larus ridibundus 21,000 (wintering)). Species of global conservation concern that do not meet IBA criteria: Branta ruficollis (passage); Aythya nyroca (passage); Oxyura leucocephala (passage); Haliaeetus albicilla (1-3 passage, 3-5 wintering individuals).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Tundra Swan Cygnus columbianus winter  1997  2-29 individuals  B2  Least Concern 
Gadwall Mareca strepera passage  1997  100-300 individuals  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Northern Shoveler Spatula clypeata passage  1997  200-700 individuals  B1i, C3  Least Concern 
Ixobrychus minutus breeding  1991  4-6 breeding pairs  C6  Not Recognised 
European Honey-buzzard Pernis apivorus breeding  1991  10-25 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Western Marsh-harrier Circus aeruginosus breeding  1991  3-6 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Milvus migrans breeding  1991  25-40 breeding pairs  C6  Not Recognised 
Common Crane Grus grus passage  1997  6,000-13,500 individuals  A4i, B1i, C2  Least Concern 
Middle Spotted Woodpecker Leiopicus medius breeding  1991  40-50 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
Red-backed Shrike Lanius collurio breeding  1991  30-50 breeding pairs  C6  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds passage  1997  20,000-49,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii, C4   
A4iv Species group - soaring birds/cranes passage  1997  6,000-13,500 individuals  B1iv, C5   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Etangs de la Champagne humide Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 135,000 protected area contains site 35,800  
Forêt d'Orient Nature Reserve 1,560 protected area contained by site 1,560  
Lac Seine Hunting Reserve 2,500 protected area contained by site 2,500  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest; Broadleaved deciduous woodland; Native coniferous woodland  35%
Grassland Humid grasslands  -
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams; Standing freshwater; Water fringe vegetation  15%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Highly improved re-seeded landscapes; Other urban and industrial areas; Perennial crops, orchards and groves  44%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 20%
fisheries/aquaculture 15%
forestry 34%
hunting 80%
tourism/recreation 60%
urban/industrial/transport 4%
water management 14%

Protection status National High International High2,500 ha of IBA covered by Hunting Reserve (Lac Seine, 2,500 ha). 35,800 ha of IBA covered by Ramsar Site (Etangs de Champagne humide, 135,000 ha). 2,500 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Lac de la forêt d'Orient, 2,500 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Lacs de la Forêt d'Orient. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016

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