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Location Libya, Tubruq
Central coordinates 23o 18.00' East  32o 13.00' North
IBA criteria A3, A4i
Area 1,000 ha
Altitude 0 - 2m
Year of IBA assessment 2001





Site description Ayn al Ghazalah Bay is situated in the south of the Gulf of Bumbah (Bomba), between the towns of Darnah and Tubruq. In the mouth of the bay lies the island of Geziret al Elba, 2 km from the coast. The island is 2.5 km by 1 km, reaching only 1.5 m at the northern, rocky end, from where it slopes gradually into a saltmarsh at sea-level at the southern end. The saltmarsh consists primarily of Salicornia fruticosa and Halimione portulacoides. The coastline of Ayn al Ghazalah Bay also contains some areas of saltmarsh and coastal lagoons backed by desert.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 2 for key species. Other breeding species on the island include Sterna albifrons (25 pairs), Larus cachinnans (10 pairs), Charadrius alexandrinus (few pairs) and Galerida cristata (10 pairs). The bay may be important for migrant waterbirds. It is probable that further species of the Mediterranean North Africa biome will be found in the mainland part of the site. In addition, one species of the Sahara–Sindian biome (A02) has also been recorded (see Table 2).

Non-bird biodiversity: The mainland coast of the Ayn al Ghazalah Bay is an important breeding site for the sea-turtle Caretta caretta (EN).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Barbary Partridge Alectoris barbara resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Lesser Crested Tern Thalasseus bengalensis breeding  1993  40 breeding pairs  A4i  Least Concern 
Red-rumped Wheatear Oenanthe moesta resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
not utilised -

References Meininger and Wolf (1994), Meininger et al. (1994a and b).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Geziret al Elba - Ayn al Ghazalah Bay. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 27/11/2014

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