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Location Uganda, Bushenyi,Mbarara
Central coordinates 30o 14.58' East  0o 16.14' South
IBA criteria A1, A3
Area 40,000 ha
Altitude 975 - 2,136m
Year of IBA assessment 2008

NatureUganda



Summary Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve is one of Uganda’s remaining medium altitude moist Forests which cover a large watershed with great direct and indirect importance. Its biodiversity rich with threatened species of birds and other animal species. It contains many biome restricted species and acts as a significant game corridor to the adjacent National Parks and Wildlife Reserves.

Site description Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve is located in Western Uganda, covers an area of 392 Km2 and situated South of Lake George and Kazinga channel in the Albertine Rift eco-region, characterized by a high number of endemic species (NFA, 1999, Franks, 2003). The core landscape surrounding the primary conservation area of Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve covers approximately 870 km2. Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve is one of Uganda’s few remaining medium altitude moist forests. It was designated as a forest reserve in 1932 covering Kasyoha (77 Km2) and Kitomi (90 Km2) and regazzeted later as Kasyoha Kitomi Forest Reserve in 1948. Lately, the Lubare ridge in the South and Kakasi in the North, were added to the Reserve in 1996 and 1997 respectively. The first management plan was written in 1957. The forest management is under the jurisdiction of the Districts of Bushenyi, Ibanda and Kamwengye. The forest borders Kanyambogo to the North, Kalinzu / Maramagambo Forest Reserves to the South-east, Kyamuhanga tea estate/Bitoma and Ndangaro parishes to the South, Rwanjere to the East and Kyambura Wildlife Reserve (UG008) and Queen Elizabeth National Park (UG007) to the west. The area covering Mwongyera and Butoma parishes acts as a biodiversity corridor connecting the Wildlife Reserve and the National Park with the Forest. There are exoduses of animals from the Park to the Forest and vice versa. The area also borders with the Kazinga channel to the west which connects Lake Albert and Lake George. The lakes function as a source of river Kyambula which traverses the whole Forest Reserve. Kasyoha-Kitomi provides ecological services for Lake George which has the most fisheries in the country. It lies within the Albertine Rift. The altitude ranges from 975 – 2136 m above sea level. Most of the Forest is found along the valleys of the Western ranges. The rainfall is bimodal with quantity of 1250 – 1400mm per year (Raben et al., 2007). It has a minimum temperature ranges of 13 – 15oC and maximum temperatures ranges of 25 – 26oC. Kasyoha-Kitomi provides ecological services for Lake George which has the most fisheries in the country. It lies within the Albertine Rift eco-region characterised by a high number of endemic species (NFA, 1999, Franks, 2003). The vegetation of Kasyoha-Kitomi has been described by Langdale-Brown et al. (1964) and classed into Parinari forest described as medium altitude moist-evergreen forest (Kasyoha); Albizia-Markhamia forest described as medium altitude moist-semi deciduous forest (Kitomi and Kakasi); Forest/Savanna mosaic at high altitude (Lubare ridge and South-west of Kasyoha) and, post-cultivation Hyparrhenia-Pteridium community (Southern part of Kasyoha). The major Forest types as described by Langdale-Brown et al. (1964) are therefore medium altitude, moist evergreen and medium altitude moist semi-deciduous Forest; with grasslands.

Key Biodiversity The current number of bird species recorded from Kasyoha-Kitomi stands at 308 species (Plumptre et al, 2003) and over 276 species of birds has been reported from this Forest Reserve (Howard and Davenport, 1996) of which the White-napped Pigeon (Columbia albinucha) and Grey Parrot (Psittacus erithacus) are considered globally Near-threatened. Kasyoha-Kitomi has one confirmed Albertine Rift endemic species (Blue-headed Sunbird). The other biome restricted species include Afep Pigeon, Black Bee-eater, Blue-throated Brown Sunbird, Blue-throated Roller, Dusky Long-tailed Cuckoo, White-collared Olive-back, Cinnamon-breasted Bee-eater, Shelley's Greenbul, Equatorial Akalat and Mountain Illadopsis among others .

Non-bird biodiversity: Kasyoha-Kitomi exhibit a diversity of wildlife, including one threatened species and one IUCN listed species of mammals. The mammals include among others, the elephant (L. africana), chimpanzee (P. troglodytes) and L’hoest’s monkey (C. l’hoesti). The small mammals recorded in Kasyoha-Kitomi according to Howard and Davenport (1996), include three uncommon forest dependent shrews – Northern Swamp Musk Shrew, Eastern Musk Shrew and Hero Shrew. The Albertine endemic, Woosnam’s Brush-furred Rat is also recorded. It habours one threatened species and one IUCN-listed species of reptile, four Albertine Rift endemic species of amphibians, two threatened and two IUCN-listed species of amphibians.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Trachyphonus purpuratus resident  2008  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Speckled Tinkerbird Pogoniulus scolopaceus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Western Green Tinkerbird Pogoniulus coryphaea resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-throated Tinkerbird Pogoniulus subsulphureus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-spotted Barbet Buccanodon duchaillui resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Hairy-breasted Barbet Tricholaema hirsuta resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Cassin's Hawk-eagle Aquila africana resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Afep Pigeon Columba unicincta resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-naped Pigeon Columba albinucha resident  2008  present  A1, A3  Near Threatened 
Psittacus erithacus resident  2008  present  A1, A3  Not Recognised 
Dusky Long-tailed Cuckoo Cercococcyx mechowi resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Olive Long-tailed Cuckoo Cercococcyx olivinus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-chested Owlet Glaucidium tephronotum resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-throated Roller Eurystomus gularis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chocolate-backed Kingfisher Halcyon badia resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black Bee-eater Merops gularis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Cinnamon-chested Bee-eater Merops oreobates resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Campethera tullbergi resident  2008  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Buff-spotted Woodpecker Campethera nivosa resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Brown-eared Woodpecker Campethera caroli resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-crested Woodpecker Dendropicos xantholophus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
African Shrike-flycatcher Megabyas flammulatus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chestnut Wattle-eye Platysteira castanea resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Jameson's Wattle-eye Platysteira jamesoni resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Doherty's Bush-shrike Telophorus dohertyi resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Petit's Cuckooshrike Campephaga petiti resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Western Black-headed Oriole Oriolus brachyrhynchus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-headed Paradise-flycatcher Terpsiphone rufiventer resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Dusky Tit Parus funereus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chubb's Cisticola Cisticola chubbi resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Apalis rufogularis resident  2008  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Olive-green Camaroptera Camaroptera chloronota resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Shelley's Greenbul Andropadus masukuensis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Grey Greenbul Andropadus gracilis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Plain Greenbul Andropadus curvirostris resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Honeyguide Greenbul Baeopogon indicator resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Joyful Greenbul Chlorocichla laetissima resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Toro Olive Greenbul Phyllastrephus hypochloris resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-throated Greenbul Phyllastrephus albigularis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Xavier's Greenbul Phyllastrephus xavieri resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Common Bristlebill Bleda syndactylus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-tailed Bulbul Criniger calurus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Green Hylia Hylia prasina resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Green Crombec Sylvietta virens resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-browed Crombec Sylvietta leucophrys resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Scaly-breasted Illadopsis Illadopsis albipectus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Brown Illadopsis Illadopsis fulvescens resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Mountain Illadopsis Illadopsis pyrrhoptera resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Purple-headed Glossy-starling Lamprotornis purpureiceps resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sharpe's Starling Cinnyricinclus sharpii resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Waller's Starling Onychognathus walleri resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Stuhlmann's Starling Poeoptera stuhlmanni resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Narrow-tailed Starling Poeoptera lugubris resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-tailed Ant-thrush Neocossyphus poensis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Forest Robin Stiphrornis erythrothorax resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Equatorial Akalat Sheppardia aequatorialis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sooty Flycatcher Muscicapa infuscata resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Dusky-blue Flycatcher Muscicapa comitata resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Cassin's Grey Flycatcher Muscicapa cassini resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-throated Tit-flycatcher Myioparus griseigularis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Little Green Sunbird Nectarinia seimundi resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-throated Brown Sunbird Nectarinia cyanolaema resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Green-throated Sunbird Nectarinia rubescens resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Northern Double-collared Sunbird Nectarinia preussi resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bronze Sunbird Nectarinia kilimensis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Superb Sunbird Nectarinia superba resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Baglafecht Weaver Ploceus baglafecht resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-billed Weaver Ploceus melanogaster resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Vieillot's Black Weaver Ploceus nigerrimus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Brown-capped Weaver Ploceus insignis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-headed Malimbe Malimbus rubricollis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Woodhouse's Antpecker Parmoptila woodhousei resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-breasted Negrofinch Nigrita fusconotus resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-collared Oliveback Nesocharis ansorgei resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Swee Waxbill Estrilda melanotis resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 
Serinus striolatus resident  2008  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Thick-billed Seedeater Serinus burtoni resident  2008  present  A3  Least Concern 

IBA Monitoring

2012 low favourable medium
Habitat
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Agricultural expansion and intensification livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - small-holder grazing, ranching or farming happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Invasive and other problematic species and genes invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - unspecified species happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Natural system modifications fire & fire suppression - increase in fire frequency/intensity happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species gathering terrestrial plants - unintentional effects (species being assessed is not the target) happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low

Forest   0 0 good (> 90%) good (> 90%) favourable

Whole area of site (>90%) covered by appropriate conservation designation  A comprehensive and appropriate management plan exists that aims to maintain or improve the populations of qualifying bird species  Some limited conservation initiatives are in place  medium 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Kasyoha - Kitomi Forest Reserve 38,461 is identical to site 39,200  

Local conservation groups The local conservation groups below are working to support conservation at this IBA.

Name Year formed
Ndangaro Environment and Conservation Association (NECA) 0
Mwongera Parish Environmental Conservation Association (MPECA) 0
Bitooma Abeteriiene Twebiseho Association (BATA) 0
Rwajere Parish Tree Planting Association (RPTPA) 0
Kanywambogo Environmental Development Association (KEDA) 0
Butoha Twetungure Turinde Ebyobuhangwa Association (BTTEA) 0
Buzenga Environmenttal Association 0

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Mid-altitude forest - transitional  major

Land ownership The Forest is a Central Forest Reserve which is managed by National Forest Authority on behave of the Government of Uganda. This therefore means that the Forest Reserve is owned by the Government. The communities are being involved in the management as well through the CFM aproach.

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
forestry major
Notes: Kasyoha-Kitomi is a Rorest Reserve which is under National Forest Authority. Its major use is forestry. This Forest is also vital for conservation since its the main biodiversity corridor for neibouring National Parks. With increasing pressure for resources form the forest by the local community, Collaborative Forest Management Agreements have been effected.

Protection status The Western side of the Forest Reserve which includes Mwongyera and Butoha is adjacent to Queen Elizabeth National Park and Kyambura Game Reserve. The area acts as a biodiversity corridor connecting the National Park with the Forest. There are exoduses of animals from the Park to the Forest and vice versa. The area also borders with the Kazinga channel which connects Lake Albert and Lake George. The lakes function as a source of river Kyambula which traverses the whole Forest Reserve.

Access/Land-Owner requests The Forest Reserve is used for a number of activities. The prime being forestry. Formally the the communities were not allowed to access the resources and this created conflicts between the managers and the local commuinities. The communities are now being involved in the management as well through the CFM aproach. This means that they can access some resources with authority from NFA.

Acknowledgements National Biodiversity Data Bank Hosted by Makerere University Institute of Environment and Natural Resources.

References National Biodiversity Data Bank Hosted by Makerere University Institute of Environment and Natural Resources. Howard, P., Davenport, T and Dickinson C (1996). Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve Biodiversity Reports Uganda, Forest Department, Kampala. Langdale-Brown, I., Osmaston, H. A. and Wilson, J. G, (1964). The vegetation of Uganda and its bearing on land use. Government of Uganda, Kampala. Franks, P, (2003). Participatory Environmental Management in Uganda: Engaging the rural poor as partners in Conservation, Copenhagen, CARE Denmark:36 National Forest Authority (NFA), (1999). Forest Nature Conservation Master Plan, Kampala, NFA: 50. Raben, K., Nyingi, J., Loserian, D., Akello, Z. and Kidoido M., (2007). Local stakeholders use of Forest Reserves in Kasyoha-Kitomi forest Landscape, Uganda and Nguru South Forest Landscape, Tanzania, Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS) Versterkopi, Copenhagen, Denmark. A.J.Plumptre, M. Behangana, T. Davenport, C.Kahindo, R.Kityo, E.Ndomba, D. Nkuutu, I. Owiunji, P. Ssegawa, and G. Eilu (2003). The Biodiversity of the Albertine Rift; Albertine Rift Technical Reports No. 3, Wildlife Conservation Strategy

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Kasyoha-Kitomi Forest Reserve. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/12/2014

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