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Location Jamaica, Saint Elizabeth
Central coordinates 77o 56.41' West  18o 2.47' North
IBA criteria A1, A2, A4i, B4i
Area 3,000 ha
Altitude
Year of IBA assessment 2010





Site description Font Hill IBA is located 13 km west of Black River Morass IBA (JM007) in St. Elizabeth Parish, on the south coast of south-western Jamaica. It includes 1 km offshore of marine habitat.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
West Indian Whistling-duck Dendrocygna arborea resident  2010  50-75 breeding pairs  medium  A1, A4i  Vulnerable 
Least Tern Sternula antillarum breeding  2010  45-55 breeding pairs  poor  B4i  Least Concern 
Jamaican Owl Pseudoscops grammicus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Mango Anthracothorax mango resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Red-billed Streamertail Trochilus polytmus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Vervain Hummingbird Mellisuga minima resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Tody Todus todus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Woodpecker Melanerpes radiolatus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Becard Pachyramphus niger resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Elaenia Myiopagis cotta resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Sad Flycatcher Myiarchus barbirostris resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Rufous-tailed Flycatcher Myiarchus validus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Stolid Flycatcher Myiarchus stolidus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Vireo Vireo modestus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
White-chinned Thrush Turdus aurantius resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Arrowhead Warbler Dendroica pharetra resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Oriole Icterus leucopteryx resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Yellow-shouldered Grassquit Loxipasser anoxanthus resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Orangequit Euneornis campestris resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Spindalis Spindalis nigricephala resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 
Jamaican Euphonia Euphonia jamaica resident  2010  present  A2  Least Concern 

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Mangrove  major
Wetlands (inland)   -
Coastline Intertidal mud, sand & salt flats; Lagoons; Salt & brackish marshes; Sand dunes & beaches; Shallow marine areas, coral reefs & keys  -

Land ownership Private property

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
tourism/recreation minor
Notes: A popular beach park borders the entrance to the natural area and is a popular destination for local Jamaicans.
fisheries/aquaculture minor
Notes: The coastal areas and the freshwater ponds receive some pressure from local fishing.
agriculture major
Notes: A large portion of Font Hill is used for agricultural purposes including experimental plantings of trees for the development of coal to cashew and mango plantations to squash and yam fields

Other biodiversity The Vulnerable West Indian Manatee Trichechus manatus occurs, and the coast is a nesting area for sea turtles such as the Critically Endangered Hawksbill Eretmochelys imbricata , Endangered Green turtle Chelonia mydas and Loggerhead Caretta caretta . Font Hill IBA along with Black River Great Morass IBA have been identified as the most important American Crocodile Crocodylus acutus habitats in Jamaica.

Protection status Font Hill IBA is currently unprotected.

Acknowledgements Pete Marra, Tom Sherry, Ann Sutton

References 1) Holmes, R.T., T.W. Sherry, and L.R. Reitsma. 1989. Population structure, territoriality, and overwinter survival of two migrant warbler species in Jamaica. Condor 91: 545-561. 2) Marra, P.P., K.A. Hobson, and R.T. Holmes. 1998. Linking winter and summer events in a migratory bird by using stable-carbon isotopes. Science 282: 1884-1886. 3) Marra, P.P. 2000. The role of behavioral dominance in structuring habitat occupancy of a migrant bird during the non-breeding season. Behavioral Ecology 11: 299-308. 4) Strong, A.M., and T.W. Sherry. 2000. Habitat-specific effects of food abundance on the condition of Ovenbirds wintering in Jamaica. Journal of Animal Ecology 69:883-895. 5) Marra, P.P., and R.T. Holmes. 2001. Consequences of dominance-mediated habitat segregation in a migrant passerine bird during the non-breeding season. Auk 118:94-106. 6) Studds, C. E. and Marra, P. P. 2005. Non-breeding habitat occupancy and population processes: an upgrade experiment with a migratory bird. Ecology 86: 2380-2385. 7) Brown, D.R., T.W. Sherry. 2006. Food supply controls physical condition of a long distance migrant bird wintering in the tropics. Oecologia 149: 22-32. 8) Johnson, M.D., T.W. Sherry, R.T. Holmes, and P.P. Marra. 2006. Assessing habitat quality for a migratory songbird wintering in natural and agricultural habitats. Conservation Biology 20: 1433-1444. 9) Studds C., K. Kyser and P.P. Marra. 2008. Natal Dispersal Driven by Environmental Conditions Interacting Across the Annual Cycle of a Migratory Songbird. 2008. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science 105: 2929-2933. 10) Studds C. and P.P. Marra. 2007. Linking fluctuations in rainfall to non-breeding season performance in a long-distance migratory bird. Climate Research 35:115–122

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Font Hill. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/07/2014

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