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Location Kenya, Eastern Province
Central coordinates 37o 14.00' East  1o 35.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A2
Area 5,000 ha
Altitude 1,300 - 1,600m
Year of IBA assessment 2001


Site description This area comprises river and stream valleys in the catchment of the Ikiwe and Ngwani rivers, south of Machakos town, draining eastwards into the Athi river system. The land slopes gradually down from the Athi-Kapiti plains in the west, with an intricate system of river valleys draining between small hills. The area is semi-arid rangeland, with rainfall around 500–700 mm/year, and with low potential for agriculture. Most of the streams and rivers are seasonal, with shallow valleys. The riverbeds consist of sand and rock, with a dense band of bush and thicket (dominated by Grewia trichocarpa with Teclea and Aspilia species) for about 10 m on either side, grading into open Acacia hockii and A. xanthophloea woodland. The land is owned by a number of large ranches, including Potha, Kilima and Kimutwa, some of which have been divided up into small agricultural plots. The boundaries of the IBA are presently undefined, requiring further survey work; it includes sections of the Ikiwe, Kimutwa, Love, Makilu, Mwania, Potha, Syuuni, Wamua and Wamui rivers.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Hinde's Pied-babbler Turdoides hindei resident  1999  present  A1, A2  Vulnerable 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Woodland - riparian  -
Savanna Bushland & thicket - evergreen  -
Grassland   100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -

Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.

References Njoroge and Bennun (2000), Shaw et al. (2001).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Machakos valleys. Downloaded from on 31/10/2014

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