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Location Burkina Faso, Oudalan
Central coordinates 0o 5.00' West  14o 42.00' North
IBA criteria A3, A4i, A4iii
Area 45,000 ha
Altitude 250 - 300m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Fondation des Amis de la Nature (NATURAMA)

Site description This site consists of seven seasonal lakes, the largest of which are Oursi and Darkoye, in the Réserve Partielle du Sahel, north of the town of Gorom-Gorom. The westernmost, Tin Edia, is located at the foot of hills, Oursi, the largest, is at the base of old sand-dunes, while the others, Darkoye, Kouyéra, Yomboli, Kissi and Bangao, occur in open steppe, to the west of the town of Markoye. Also included is the habitat between the lakes which includes sand-dunes (such as at Oursi), semi-desert grasslands, open eroded shields, drainage lines, inselbergs rising out of the plains and a series of hills. Depending entirely upon the annual run-off from the rains of July to September, lake levels vary considerably from year to year. Some lakes are ringed by important stands of trees such as Acacia albida and Ficus sp. On the seasonal flood-plains there is a rich plant community, including Aeschynomene lotus and the sedges and grasses Cyperus alopecuroides, Echinochloa stagnina, E. pyramidalis and Oryza longistaminata, providing important dry season grazing.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Little Grebe Tachybaptus ruficollis winter  500 individuals  medium  A4i  Least Concern 
Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio winter  647 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Himantopus himantopus winter  1,713 individuals  A4i  Not Recognised 
African Collared-dove Streptopelia roseogrisea resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Cricket Longtail Spiloptila clamans resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chestnut-bellied Starling Lamprotornis pulcher resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black Scrub-robin Cercotrichas podobe resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sudan Golden Sparrow Passer luteus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  20,000 individuals  unknown  A4iii   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
La Mare d'Oursi Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 45,000 is identical to site 45,000  
Sahel Partial Faunal Reserve 1,600,000 protected area contains site 45,000  

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

Name Year formed
Oursi Site Support Group 1998


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   5%
Grassland   94%
Wetlands (inland) Freshwater lakes and pools  minor

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
fisheries/aquaculture -
nature conservation and research -
other -
Notes: Firewood collection.
rangeland/pastureland major
Notes: Information added by Georges Oueda based on experience May 2008

Other biodiversity Mammals of global conservation concern include Gazella rufifrons (VU) and Acinonyx jubatus (VU) (continued occurrence requires verification).

Related state of the world's birds case studies

References MEE (1997), Weessie (1996).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Lake Oursi - Lake Darkoye. Downloaded from on 25/10/2014

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