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Location Austria, Niederösterreich
Central coordinates 15o 25.00' East  48o 19.00' North
IBA criteria B2, C6
Area 17,399 ha
Altitude 198 - 960m
Year of IBA assessment 2009

BirdLife Austria

Site description The Wachau, part of the Danube valley, is characterized by rocky slopes and cliffs. Land-use in the Wachau is mainly vineyards and orchards on the slopes, with arable land on the valley floor. Extensive areas of forest also remain on the slopes but native broadleaved species have been replaced with Picea. The Jauerling, a low mountain to the north-west of the Wachau, is covered by non-native Picea forests, interspersed with patches of broadleaved forest and grasslands.

Key Biodiversity The site is important for species characteristic of open woodland, non-intensively managed orchards, rocky slopes and cliffs.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Eurasian Eagle-owl Bubo bubo resident  2000-2005  15-18 breeding pairs  good  B2, C6  Least Concern 
Collared Flycatcher Ficedula albicollis breeding  1997-2005  300 breeding pairs  medium  C6  Least Concern 
Rock Bunting Emberiza cia resident  1997-2005  100-150 breeding pairs  medium  B2  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest; Broadleaved deciduous woodland; Native coniferous woodland  40%
Grassland Humid grasslands; Mesophile grasslands; Steppes and dry calcareous grassland  5%
Wetlands (inland) Rivers and streams  5%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Forestry plantations; Other urban and industrial areas; Perennial crops, orchards and groves  50%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 30%
forestry 70%

Protection status National None International High25,000 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Wachau-Jauerling, 45,802 ha).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Wachau. Downloaded from on 22/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife