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Location Egypt, North Sinai
Central coordinates 34o 40.00' East  29o 55.00' North
IBA criteria A3
Area 100,000 ha
Altitude 200 - 400m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Nature Conservation Eqypt (Affiliate)



Site description An extensive wadi system in eastern-central Sinai. The wadi’s catchment area extends from the El Tih Plateau in the south and the Israeli border in the east, to a ridge of hills in the north and west that separate this watershed from that of Wadi El Arish. The wadi and its numerous tributaries cut through slightly undulating gravel-plains and low-lying limestone country with scattered hills. The main tributaries that flow into Wadi Gerafi include Wadi Tamarani and Wadi El Beida. This wadi system flows north-east, eventually reaching Wadi Araba in the Negev. Vegetation is largely restricted to runnels, depressions and wadis, although wide torrent-beds are largely devoid of vegetation. A fairly dense growth of large Acacia trees lines the main wadi and its major tributaries, forming open parkland. Retama forms dense, bushy cover along the fringes of wadis and in depressions. Other dominant flora includes Hammada, Panicum and Fagonia. Bedouins, who have scattered settlements and cultivation along the wadi system, sparsely inhabit the area.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Sand Partridge Ammoperdix heyi resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sooty Falcon Falco concolor breeding  1998  present  A3  Near Threatened 
Spotted Sandgrouse Pterocles senegallus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Crowned Sandgrouse Pterocles coronatus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Lichtenstein's Sandgrouse Pterocles lichtensteinii resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pharaoh Eagle-owl Bubo ascalaphus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Hume's Owl Strix butleri resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pale Crag-martin Hirundo obsoleta resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Greater Hoopoe-lark Alaemon alaudipes resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bar-tailed Lark Ammomanes cinctura resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Streaked Scrub-warbler Scotocerca inquieta resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Arabian Babbler Turdoides squamiceps resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Mourning Wheatear Oenanthe lugens resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe leucopyga resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Hooded Wheatear Oenanthe monacha resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Blackstart Cercomela melanura resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Trumpeter Finch Bucanetes githagineus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -

Other biodiversity Reptiles: Coluber sinai and Telescopus hoogstraali are two snakes that are endemic to South Sinai and the Negev. The former was found in one of the southern tributaries of Wadi Gerafi, while the latter almost certainly occurs in the area. Mammals: Canis lupus probably inhabits the area in very small numbers. Vulpes rueppelli (DD) is uncommon. Gazella dorcas (VU) is still found in small numbers, but is declining as a result of excessive hunting.

References Hadidi et al. (1992).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Wadi Gerafi. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/10/2014

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