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Location Botswana, South East
Central coordinates 25o 57.60' East  24o 37.20' South
IBA criteria A4i
Area 100 ha
Altitude 980 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

BirdLife Botswana (Partner Designate)

Site description Four large sewage-treatment lagoons, operational since late 1990, surrounded by grassland and Acacia-dominated savanna, c.15 km north of Gaborone, close to the dormitory village of Phakalane. The lagoons are roughly rectangular (totalling 70 ha of water), generally steep-sided, and edged by high bunds. There are some exposed muddy edges, small areas of sand and gravel, several very small islands and remnants of dead and dying trees in one lagoon. There is marginal vegetation of Typha, Phragmites and scattered small trees and bushes.The site lies adjacent to the Ngotwane river, a small tributary of the Limpopo, into which the final effluent discharges. Riparian vegetation along this section of the Ngotwane is dominated by Combretum and there are some open areas of wet grassland and Juncus. Upriver in and south of Gaborone (outside the IBA) there are a series of artificial wetlands along the Ngotwane river. These are interlinked in that all are used by waterfowl which frequently move from one dam or sewage pond to another. These wetlands include Mogobane Dam, Ngotwane Dam, the large Gaborone Dam completed in 1964/65 and covering 19 km², various sewage ponds in Gaborone, notably Ngotwane, Maru-a-Pula and Tsholofelo, and associated wetlands such as the Typha swamp in Gaborone Game Reserve. Although all these at times hold a diversity of waterfowl, none support large numbers nor any species in numbers that exceed the 0.5% threshold. Phakalane sewage ponds are undoubtedly the most important in this chain of wetlands.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Maccoa Duck Oxyura maccoa winter  1993-1995  100-440 individuals  good  A4i  Near Threatened 
Southern Pochard Netta erythrophthalma winter  1993-1995  605 individuals  good  A4i  Least Concern 

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
tourism/recreation -
water management -

Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.

References Bishop (1994), Bishop (1995), Bishop and Tyler (1998), Tyler (2001).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Phakalane sewage lagoons, near Gaborone. Downloaded from on 02/09/2014

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