|Location||Cape Verde, Santiago|
|Central coordinates||23o 39.00' West 15o 3.00' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A2|
|Altitude||700 - 1,392m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Ornithological information See Box and Table 2 for key species. Endemic birds breeding in the area comprise Puffinus (assimilis) boydi, Buteo (‘buteo’) bannermani, Falco (tinnunculus) alexandri, Falco (peregrinus) madens, Tyto (alba) detorta, Apus alexandri, Acrocephalus brevipennis and Passer iagoensis. Milvus (milvus) fasciicauda used to occur, but is now extinct on Santiago (and is virtually so everywhere). In addition, Pterodroma feae was recorded breeding during the 1960s, but there is no recent information. Other breeding species include Coturnix coturnix, Halcyon leucocephala, Sylvia conspicillata, S. atricapilla and Passer hispaniolensis.
Site description This site comprises the central mountain range of the island of Santiago and includes the island’s highest peak (Pico da Antónia, 1,392 m). The terrain is, in general, rugged, and accessibility is limited, but there are some roads and several trails which lead to the summit. Large parts of the slopes and crest are forested with a variety of trees, in particular Eucalyptus spp. These woods are managed by the state forestry service. The higher parts are often shrouded in clouds and, during much of the year, are relatively well-watered by mist and drizzle. There is some cultivation of coffee on the higher slopes, while maize and beans are grown at lower altitudes. Part of the mountain’s rim is a military zone, closed to the public, and there is also a telecommunications station.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus||resident||-||present [units unknown]||-||A1||Least Concern|
|Red Kite Milvus milvus||resident||-||unknown [units unknown]||-||A1||Near Threatened|
|Long-legged Buzzard Buteo rufinus||resident||-||present [units unknown]||-||A1||Least Concern|
|Alexander's Swift Apus alexandri||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A2||Least Concern|
|Cape Verde Warbler Acrocephalus brevipennis||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A1, A2||Endangered|
|Iago Sparrow Passer iagoensis||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A2||Least Concern|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
Other biodiversity Endemic lizards Mabuya stangeri spinalis, Tarentola darwini, T. rudis and Hemidactylus brooki angulatus occur at the site. Endemic plants include Euphorbia tuckeyana, Campanula jacobaea and Sonchus daltonii.
Management considerations The population of Buteo (‘buteo’) bannermani is now extremely small, while Milvus (milvus) fasciicauda has recently become extinct on Santiago, but the exact reasons for their decline are poorly understood. It is thought that pesticides have played a role (especially before 1975); also nest robbery by children may have contributed. Guns are rare amongst the population, but a few license holders regularly hunt Numida meleagris, an introduced species common in the area. It is unknown if, and to what extent, other birds are shot, but this is probably not a major threat today. In the past it may, however, have been considerable, because raptors are generally considered to be ‘chicken thieves’, and this may be at the root of the present rarity of large raptors. Specific research must be carried out to establish the present status of Pterodroma feae in the area (and on Santiago as a whole). The population of Acrocephalus brevipennis appears to be relatively stable, at least at this site. Tree-felling causes temporary disturbance.
References Hazevoet (1993, 1995), Hille and Thiollay (2000), Sangster (2000).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Serra do Pico da Antónia. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/05/2013
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