|Central coordinates||38o 34.00' East 8o 50.00' North|
|Altitude||2,200 - 3,385m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Ornithological information See Box and Table 3 for key species. The site holds a particularly high number of Afrotropical Highlands biome species, among which are three Ethiopian endemics, Agapornis taranta, Dendropicos abyssinicus and Parophasma galinieri. Other highland species of interest include Tauraco leucotis, Lybius undatus, Zoothera piaggiae, Pseudoalcippe abyssinica, Oriolus monacha, Cinnyricinclus sharpii and Onychognathus tenuirostris. Also of notes are Stephanoaetus coronatus (which breeds), Apaloderma narina and Poicephalus flavifrons.
Site description Menagesha State Forest is in West Shewa Zone. It is on the south-western slopes of Mt Wechecha and can be reached via either the Jimma or Ambo roads. Mt Wechecha is a massive (3,385 m) extinct volcano. The mountainsides are generally steep with ravines cut by streams and rivers. The southern base of the mountain is at c.2,200 m and flanks the Becho plains. Menagesha State Forest covers 9,248 ha, and in 1990 plantation forest comprised 1,316 ha and natural forest 2,720 ha, the remainder being open farmland, grazing and bare land. The natural forest is dominated by Juniperus procera that grows to c.30 m, and forms a relatively open canopy. Olea europaea cuspidata, Allophylus abyssinicus, Maytenus spp. and Euphorbia ampliphylla form the understorey, and some Podocarpus falcatus trees are scattered throughout the forest. At higher altitudes, smaller Juniperus procera are mixed with Erica arborea, Rosa abyssinica and the endemic Jasminum stans. Two giant herbs, Lobelia gibberoa and Solanecio gigas dominate the sides of the valleys, while the striking Scadoxus multiflorus carpets the forest floor. The area all around Menagesha forest is intensively but traditionally farmed, for livestock and crops. The forest is popular with visitors.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Erckel's Francolin Francolinus erckelii||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Wattled Ibis Bostrychia carunculata||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|White-collared Pigeon Columba albitorques||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Dusky Turtle-dove Streptopelia lugens||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Black-winged Lovebird Agapornis taranta||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|White-cheeked Turaco Tauraco leucotis||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Nyanza Swift Apus niansae||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Banded Barbet Lybius undatus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Abyssinian Woodpecker Dendropicos abyssinicus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Dark-headed Oriole Oriolus monacha||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Thick-billed Raven Corvus crassirostris||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|White-backed Tit Parus leuconotus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Brown Woodland-warbler Phylloscopus umbrovirens||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|African Hill Babbler Pseudoalcippe abyssinica||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Abyssinian Catbird Parophasma galinieri||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Montane White-eye Zosterops poliogastrus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Sharpe's Starling Cinnyricinclus sharpii||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Slender-billed Starling Onychognathus tenuirostris||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Abyssinian Ground-thrush Zoothera piaggiae||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Not Recognised|
|Rueppell's Robin-chat Cossypha semirufa||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Abyssinian Slaty Flycatcher Dioptrornis chocolatinus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Tacazze Sunbird Nectarinia tacazze||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Swainson's Sparrow Passer swainsonii||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Baglafecht Weaver Ploceus baglafecht||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Abyssinian Citril Serinus citrinelloides||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Brown-rumped Seedeater Serinus tristriatus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Streaky Seedeater Serinus striolatus||resident||1996||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Not Recognised|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Menagesha-Suba||National Forest Priority Area||9,557||is identical to site||9,557|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Artificial landscapes (terrestrial)||100%|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||-|
Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.
Management considerations Due to its close proximity to Addis Ababa, Menagesha State Forest has a long history of exploitation and reforestation. As early as the fifteenth century the forest was degraded and then replanted with Juniperus procera on the orders of Emperor Zera Yacob. In the 1900s, large-scale removal of wood for fuel and construction was noted, with logging continuing until 1955, at which time strict protection was put in place and had been maintained until recently. Reforestation started as early as 1949, when logging operations were still in full swing. Since 1991, local people have increasingly exploited the forest. Uncontrolled felling of trees continues unabated and is of major concern for the conservation of the forest. The wood is sold in the nearby towns of Sebeta and Holeta. Wood for construction and fuel is taken to Addis Ababa where there is a high demand. Ironically, the recently rehabilitated Menagesha Forestry Training Centre, in the middle of the forest, is being used to train regional forestry staff in forest conservation and management. Other groups also use the centre for workshops, and with improved (all-weather) access to the forest it could be used throughout the year as a major environmental education centre for Addis Ababa. The 1-ha tree nursery in the village of Suba produces seedlings (both exotic and indigenous) to replant the forest and surrounding areas.
References Forest Inventory, Demarcation and Management Plan Division (1991), Demissew (1988), Gilbert (1970), Hillman (1993).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Menagesha State Forest. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 19/06/2013
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