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Location Algeria, Oran
Central coordinates 0o 48.00' West  35o 22.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i
Area 56,870 ha
Altitude 90 - 102m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Site description The site lies just south of the city of Oran, only 12 km distant from the Mediterranean Sea at its closest point and some 70 km south-west of Marais de la Macta (site DZ017). It consists of a huge basin, subject to inundation after rainfall, that produces a wetland varying in extent from 50,000 to 100,000 ha. The basin is deeper/lower at its eastern end, leading to deeper flooding there, which spreads westwards with increasing rainfall. The sebkha dries out (becoming increasingly saline) in late summer, for a period of up to three months. It has been classed as an ‘unvegetated sebkhet’, but there is some Phragmites australis, Arthrocnemum glaucum, Juncus acutus and Scirpus sp. fringing the shores and watercourses, and Suaeda fruticosa is the dominant vegetation on the seasonally inundated saltflats. The site is surrounded by agricultural land and it is a popular hunting area. Lac de Gharabas (which also has some fairly high winter waterbird counts) lies c.30 km to the east of the site and it is possible that birds move between Sebkha d’Oran, Lac de Gharabas and Marais de la Macta (site DZ017), still further east.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Marbled Teal Marmaronetta angustirostris winter  1972  200 individuals  A1, A4i  Vulnerable 
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus winter  1998  1,408-3,055 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta winter  1979  1,250 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Sebkha d'Oran Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 56,870 is identical to site 56,870  

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
hunting -
nature conservation and research -

Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.

References Bellatreche et al. (1982), Green (1993), Heredia et al. (1996), Hughes and Hughes (1992), Morgan (1982), Scott (1980).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Sebkha d'Oran. Downloaded from on 25/10/2014

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