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Location Nigeria, Bauchi,Jigawa,Yobe
Central coordinates 10o 33.00' East  12o 39.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4i, A4iii
Area 350,000 ha
Altitude 152 - 305m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Nigerian Conservation Foundation



Site description The Hadejia-Nguru wetlands (HNW) lie on the southern edge of the Sahel savanna in north-eastern Nigeria. The area is a flood-plain complex, comprised of a mixture of seasonally flooded lands and dry uplands. Prior to the droughts of the 1970s, the wetlands covered an area of about 4,125 km², but are now reduced to c.3,500 km². The wetland is supplied by the Hadejia and Jama’are rivers. The Jama’are rises in the Jos Plateau, the Hadejia in the hills around Kano; they join within the HNW to form the Yobe river, which discharges into Lake Chad. River flow is highly seasonal and varies considerably depending upon rainfall and run-off. Peak flow occurs in August and September when banks overflow and the area is inundated. Three broad vegetation-types are identifiable. One of these is scrub savanna, which includes the upland farmland areas and Acacia woodlands. The second grows on the ‘tudu’ lands, sandy ridges which, with the exception of scattered, ephemeral ponds, are never inundated. Characteristic tree species here include Acacia spp. (especially A. albida), Ziziphus spp., Balanites aegyptiaca, Tamarindus indica and Adansonia digitata, while common grasses are Cenchrus biflorus, Andropogon spp. and Vetiveria nigritana. There are also pockets of riparian forests, known as ‘kurmi’. Common trees of the kurmi forests, at about the northern limit of their distributions, are Khaya senegalensis, Mitragyna inermis and Diospyros mespiliformis. In some parts, kurmi has been replaced with orchards of mango Mangifera indica and guava Psidium guajava. The third main vegetation-type includes the seasonally flooded marshes and ‘fadama’, in which the tree Acacia nilotica is common while Dum palms Hyphaene thebaica grow on small raised islands. Aquatic grasses such as Echinochloa and Oryza spp. are common in the marshes, while in drier parts Dactyloctenium aegyptium, Setaria spp. and Cyperus spp. occur. There are also extensive beds of Typha australis while Mimosa pigra thickets are common on edges of the lakes. Large parts of the fadama are under rice cultivation during the rainy season and, during the dry season, are usually utilized for growing other crops as water-levels drop. Uncultivated areas are grazed by livestock. Annual rainfall ranges between 200–600 mm, confined to the period late May–September.

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 
Yellow-breasted Barbet Trachyphonus margaritatus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Northern Pintail Anas acuta winter  1998  34,866 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Fulvous Whistling-duck Dendrocygna bicolor winter  1997  9,510 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
White-faced Whistling-duck Dendrocygna viduata winter  1997  58,613 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Spur-winged Goose Plectropterus gambensis winter  1995  7,332 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Garganey Spatula querquedula winter  1998  147,563 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca winter  1988  1,594 individuals  A1, A4i  Near Threatened 
Glossy Ibis Plegadis falcinellus winter  1997  2,447 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Savile's Bustard Lophotis savilei resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio winter  1997  261 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Black-tailed Godwit Limosa limosa winter  1997  6,473 individuals  A4i  Near Threatened 
Spotted Redshank Tringa erythropus winter  1997  4,065 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Ruff Calidris pugnax winter  1996  108,381 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
African Collared-dove Streptopelia roseogrisea resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Senegal Parrot Poicephalus senegalus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-throated Bee-eater Merops bulocki resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sahelian Woodpecker Dendropicos elachus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-billed Shrike Corvinella corvina resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Piapiac Ptilostomus afer resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow Penduline-tit Anthoscopus parvulus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-pate Cisticola Cisticola ruficeps resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rufous Cisticola Cisticola rufus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Cricket Longtail Spiloptila clamans resident  1999  unknown  A3  Least Concern 
Purple Glossy-starling Lamprotornis purpureus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chestnut-bellied Starling Lamprotornis pulcher resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black Scrub-robin Cercotrichas podobe resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chestnut-crowned Sparrow-weaver Plocepasser superciliosus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Sudan Golden Sparrow Passer luteus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bush Petronia Petronia dentata resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Heuglin's Masked-weaver Ploceus heuglini resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-winged Pytilia Pytilia phoenicoptera resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Lavender Waxbill Estrilda caerulescens resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-rumped Waxbill Estrilda troglodytes resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  100,000-499,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii   

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Adiani Forest Reserve 132 protected area contained by site 132  
Baturiya Wetlands Game Reserve 29,700 protected area contained by site 29,700  
Chad Basin National Park 230,000 protected area overlaps with site 0  
Nguru Lake (and Marma Channel) complex Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 58,100 protected area contained by site 58,100  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Farmbush, fallow & ruderal land; Perennial crops, orchards and groves  15%
Wetlands (inland) Artificial wetlands; Ephemeral pools and wetlands; Freshwater lakes and pools; Riverine floodplains; Rivers & streams  65%
Grassland Grassland - edaphic, dry; Grassland - edaphic, wet; Grassland - secondary; Grassland - Semi-desert  12%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 25%
Notes: Percentage of arable farmland, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings OVer Wetlands (WoW) project in 2008.
nature conservation and research 5%
Notes: Ramsar Site; Adiani Foreset Reserve; Baturiya Wetland Reserve & Chad Basin National Park, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.
tourism/recreation 1%
Notes: Ramsar Site (Nguru Lake) & Dagona Waterfowl Sanctuary, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.
water management 2%
Notes: Channelisation, Dyking and Damming, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.
fisheries/aquaculture 50%
Notes: Artisanal fishing methods, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.
military minor
Notes: Recce 241 Battalion, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.
rangeland/pastureland 1%
Notes: Stock routes, Grazing Reserves and Watering Points, using information from Nigerian Conservation Foundation (NCF) Wings Over Wetlands (WoW) project, 2008.

Other biodiversity The mammal Gazella rufifrons (VU) occurs, but is scarce. At least 89 species of freshwater fish are reported to occur.

Related state of the world's birds case studies

References Adams and Hollis (1989), Adams and Thomas (1996), Adams et al. (1993), Drijver and Marchand (1985), Ezealor (1993a, b), Garba-Boyi et al. (1992), Hollis et al. (1993), Mbanyiman (1990), Polet (2000), Stowe and Coulthard (1990).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Hadejia-Nguru wetlands. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/10/2014

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