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Location Nigeria, Niger
Central coordinates 5o 50.00' East  8o 50.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4ii
Area 73,000 ha
Altitude 60 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Nigerian Conservation Foundation



Site description The site comprises a stretch of the middle Niger river and associated flood-plains, together with the lower reaches of the Kaduna river below the Wuya bridge near Bida. The rivers are characterized by broad channels with numerous sandbanks which become small islands during the dry season when the river levels drop. Extensive low-lying areas of fadama beside the rivers become flooded during the wet season. These and the adjoining savanna woodlands are intensively farmed, resulting in fragmentation and degradation of both the Mitragyna swamp-forests along the banks of the rivers and the surrounding savanna woodlands. Trees found in remnant forest patches include Uapaca togoensis, Berlinia, Pterocarpus and Terminalia spp. Elaeis guineensis, Diospyros mespiliformis and Napoleona sp. also grow in these riparian forests. Where undisturbed by farming, the woodlands are typical of the southern Guinea Savanna, with characteristic trees such as Vitellaria paradoxa, Daniellia oliveri and Parkia biglobosa.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 3 for key species. The site is an important breeding area for Merops malimbicus with colonies of over 15,000 birds, seen in 1989 and 1996, near Tamaworo on the lower Kaduna river. Other nationally uncommon birds include Ciconia episcopus, Pteronetta hartlaubii and Nettapus auritus. Over 100 Pluvianus aegyptius and more than 150 Glareola cinerea have been counted. Glareola cinerea breeds, as does Sterna albifrons, while several Merops nubicus colonies occur in the eroded riverbanks. Indicator indicator, brood-parasites of the bee-eaters, are common visitors to the M. malimbicus colonies. In addition, four species of the Guinea–Congo Forests biome (A05) have also been recorded; see Table 3.

Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Bearded Barbet Pogonornis dubius resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Hartlaub's Duck Pteronetta hartlaubii resident  1999  present  A1  Least Concern 
Senegal Parrot Poicephalus senegalus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Violet Turaco Musophaga violacea resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-bellied Roller Coracias cyanogaster resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-throated Bee-eater Merops bulocki resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rosy Bee-eater Merops malimbicus breeding  1996  15,000 breeding pairs  A4ii  Least Concern 
Piapiac Ptilostomus afer resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Oriole Warbler Hypergerus atriceps resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Purple Glossy-starling Lamprotornis purpureus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bush Petronia Petronia dentata resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-rumped Waxbill Estrilda troglodytes resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   17%
Wetlands (inland)   7%
Shrubland   58%
Forest   15%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -

References Brown (1948), Ezealor (in prep.).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Lower Kaduna - Middle Niger flood-plain. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/12/2014

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