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Location Libya, Awbari
Central coordinates 10o 11.00' East  24o 58.00' North
IBA criteria A3
Area 50,000 ha
Altitude 640 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001





Site description The site consists of a series of spring-fed lakes, pools and swamplands, together with surrounding habitats, centred around the town of Ghat, close to the Algerian border in the south-west of the country. The town is situated under the western slopes of Jabal Akakus, an eastern outlier of the Tassili mountains stretching from Algeria into southern Libya. There are three permanent, spring-fed lakes at Tin Djeraben, one at Habschat, and three at Feuet and numerous pools and areas of natural swampland at Al Birket (Al Barcat), 12 km south of Ghat. There is also a large sebkha which holds water after rainstorms. The pools and swamps of Al Birket support many emergent plants such as Juncus spp., Phragmites australis, Scirpus holoschoenus and Typha capensis, as well as submerged and floating species including Ceratophyllum demersum, Potamogeton spp. and Utricularia spp. Several species of Chara are abundant in the pools. Away from the areas of surface water there is transition to thorn scrub and open rocky and sandy desert. Much of the natural vegetation in these areas of transition have been cleared for agriculture.

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 
Sooty Falcon Falco concolor breeding  1999  present  A3  Near Threatened 
Spotted Sandgrouse Pterocles senegallus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pale Crag-martin Hirundo obsoleta resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Greater Hoopoe-lark Alaemon alaudipes resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bar-tailed Lark Ammomanes cinctura resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-tailed Wheatear Oenanthe leucopyga resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Passer simplex resident  1999  present  A3  Not Recognised 

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -

Other biodiversity Three species of fish occur naturally in the pools: Barbus deserti (type-locality), Clarias lazera and Hemichromis bimaculatus.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Ghat oases. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 24/07/2014

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife