|Location||Kenya, Rift Valley Province|
|Central coordinates||35o 55.08' East 1o 46.14' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A2|
|Altitude||900 - 2,300m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Site description The Nguruman Escarpment forms the western wall of the Rift Valley in southernmost Kenya, some 150 km south-west of Nairobi. The scarp rises steeply in a series of stepped, rocky faults from the flood-plain of the Southern Ewaso Ngiro river on the valley floor at c.900 m to some 2,300 m on the escarpment crest. From here the land falls more gently away to the Loita Plains and the Masai Mara (IBA KE050). The vegetation changes from open Acacia tortilis woodland on the plain, to dense Acacia–Commiphora bush on the lower slopes, to Tarchonanthus thicket and grassland and, finally, submontane forest. Clear, fast-running, rocky streams flow down the escarpment, fringed on their lower reaches with tall riparian forest of figs Ficus spp. Beyond the escarpment crest, the rolling country is a mosaic of grassland, scrub and forest, with Podocarpus falcatus, P. latifolius and Diospyros abyssinica among the trees. Rainfall at the base of the eastern scarp is c.400 mm/year, rising to 750 mm on the forested ridges and peaks. Mist and dew can be heavy in the highest areas. Several Maasai group ranches communally own land on the escarpment and hills. One section of the escarpment has been leased to a private company for the development of luxury tourism.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Grey-crested Helmet-shrike Prionops poliolophus||resident||1999||present||-||A1, A2||Near Threatened|
|Red-throated Tit Parus fringillinus||resident||1999||present||-||A1||Least Concern|
|Hunter's Cisticola Cisticola hunteri||resident||1999||present||-||A2||Least Concern|
|Jackson's Widowbird Euplectes jacksoni||resident||1999||present||-||A1, A2||Near Threatened|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Forest||Montane forest - mixed; Woodland - mixed||-|
|Shrubland||Scrub - woodland||-|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
Other biodiversity The site holds substantial populations of large mammals, possibly including Diceros bicornis (CR) and Lycaon pictus (EN). There is little information on other fauna and flora.
References Bennun (1994c), Cunningham-van Someren (1977).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: South Nguruman. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/09/2014
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