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Location Madagascar, Toliara
Central coordinates 43o 48.00' East  24o 7.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A2, A3, A4i
Area 43,000 ha
Altitude 38 - 114m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Asity Madagascar (Affiliate)

Site description This site lies on the Mahafaly karst plateau, 180 km south-west of Betioky-South and 75 km south of Toliara. It consists of a lake and a bushland area on a sandy plain, 20 km long and 3 km wide on average, c.7 km inland of the Mozambique Channel, and a large area of stunted spiny forest on the calcareous plateau inland. Lake Tsimanampetsotse is shallow and has a milky colour, being the only soda-saturated lake in Madagascar. A cliff, c.100 m high, rises 1–2 km from the eastern bank of the lake. Swallow-holes on the plateau hold small lakes, from which small freshwater streams issue after rainfall. Near Lake Tsimanampetsotse, in some areas, the water is more brackish. Torrents of less brackish water flow through underground caves. Trees between the lake and the cliff can be up to 12 m high, but the vegetation of the western part of the site, between the lake and the sea, is lower, being covered in xerophilous bushland (up to 2.2 m high), and characterized by species of Cassia, Ficus, Pluchea, Erythroxylum, Cedrelopsis, Delonix, Acacia, Albizia, Maytenus, Euphorbia and Berchemia. Some Casuarina have been planted on the eastern bank of the lake.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. Eighty-eight species are known from this site, of which 35 are endemic to Madagascar. Tsimanampetsotse and Baly Bay are the only protected areas that hold Charadrius thoracicus. Anas bernieri has been recorded once at the lake.

Non-bird biodiversity: Lemurs: Lemur catta (VU), Propithecus verreauxi verreauxi (VU), Carnivore: Galidictis grandidieri (EN; only found in this reserve). Reptiles: Pyxis arachnoides (VU), Geochelone radiata (VU). Fish: Typhleotris madagascariensis (VU; a blind fish of underground caves).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor non-breeding  1998  present  A1  Near Threatened 
Madagascar Sparrowhawk Accipiter madagascariensis resident  1998  present  A1  Near Threatened 
Black-banded Plover Charadrius thoracicus resident  1998  55 individuals  A1, A2, A3, A4i  Vulnerable 
Coua ruficeps resident  1998  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Verreaux's Coua Coua verreauxi resident  1998  present  A1, A2, A3  Near Threatened 
Giant Coua Coua gigas resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Running Coua Coua cursor resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Lafresnaye's Vanga Xenopirostris xenopirostris resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Sickle-billed Vanga Falculea palliata resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Archbold's Newtonia Newtonia archboldi resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Lantz's Brush-warbler Nesillas lantzii resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Thamnornis Warbler Thamnornis chloropetoides resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Littoral Rock-thrush Monticola imerinus resident  1998  present  A2, A3  Least Concern 
Sakalava Weaver Ploceus sakalava resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 

IBA Monitoring

2001 medium not assessed not assessed
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Agriculture and aquaculture livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - small-holder grazing, ranching or farming happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Biological resource use hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - intentional use (species being assessed is the target) happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Lac Tsimanampetsotsa Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 45,604 protected area contains site 43,000  
Tsimanampetsotsa National Park 45,818 protected area contains site 43,000  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   1%
Shrubland   93%
Grassland   4%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
hunting -
nature conservation and research -
other -
Notes: Collection of honey.

Further web sources of information 

Alliance for Zero Extinction (AZE) species/site profile. This site has been identified as an AZE due to it containing a Critically Endangered or Endangered species with a limited range.

References Andriamampianina and Peyrieras (1972), Jenkins (1987), Langrand (1995), Milon (1948b), Nicoll and Langrand (1989), Petit (1935), Rand (1936), Salomonsen (1934a), World Wide Fund for Nature–Madagascar (1997), Wozencraft (1986).

Contribute  Please click here to help BirdLife conserve the world's birds - your data for this IBA and others are vital for helping protect the environment.

Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Tsimanampetsotsa National Park and extension. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016

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