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Location Northern Mariana Islands (to USA), Rota Island
Central coordinates 145o 12.00' East  14o 10.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2
Area 4,904 ha
Altitude 0 - 450m
Year of IBA assessment 2007





Site description The proposed IBA on Rota includes those areas that have been deemed feasible for management under the US National Park system. The IBA includes large areas of native forest and the USFWS-designated Critical Habitats for the Rota Bridled White-Eye and the Mariana Crow. Several cultural sites are included in the proposed IBA. Parts of the proposed IBA are currently protected by CNMI law. Because of Rota’s remaining native forest, several rare, endangered, and endemic species are known to occur in the proposed IBA.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Mariana Fruit-dove Ptilinopus roseicapilla resident  present  A1, A2  Endangered 
White-throated Ground-dove Alopecoenas xanthonurus resident  present  A1, A2  Near Threatened 
Micronesian Myzomela Myzomela rubratra resident  present  A2  Least Concern 
Rufous Fantail Rhipidura rufifrons resident  present  A2  Least Concern 
Mariana Crow Corvus kubaryi resident  2002  85 breeding pairs  unknown  A1, A2  Critically Endangered 
Rota Bridled White-eye Zosterops rotensis resident  1996  1,000 individuals  unknown  A1, A2  Critically Endangered 
Micronesian Starling Aplonis opaca resident  present  A2  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Sabana Other Area 1,700 unknown 0  

Other biodiversity Several rare, endangered, and endemic species are known to occur in the proposed IBA, including: • Endangered plants o Osmoxylon mariannenese o Nesogenese rotensis o Serianthes nelsonii o Tabernaemontana rotensis(candidate endangered species) • Mariana Fruit Bats • Fragile Tree Snail • A translocated population of Guam Rails (introduced to Rota)

Protection status Rota currently has three terrestrial conservation areas, all legislated by CNMI law in the 1990s (CNMI DFW, 2007d). These conservation areas include parts of the critical habitats for the Rota Bridled White-Eye and the Mariana Crow. In 2004 Senators from the Rota government requested assistance from the US National Park Service (NPS, 2005) in identifying feasibility and alternatives for a National Park or conservation area on Rota. In 2004 the NPS conducted a reconnaissance survey of Rota and found that the natural and cultural resources of Rota were feasible as additions to the National Park System. The NPS identified areas that would be suitable as a National Park. They found that these areas were publicly-owned lands where current human uses could be phased out; most of the lands are currently protected under current law. They also found that there was strong support from the Rota government and the Rota community for a National Park (NPS, 2005).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Rota. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 17/09/2014

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