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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.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 3 for key species. A total of 377 bird species have been recorded. A few individuals of two species of global conservation concern, Circus macrourus and Galinago media, winter occasionally. Numbers of overwintering Aythya nyroca have declined considerably in recent years. The wetlands are extremely important for waterbirds, both for breeding species and for wintering and passage Palearctic waterbirds, while the surrounding areas hold significant numbers of species of the Sahel biome and Sudan–Guinea Savanna biome. Total numbers of waterbirds recorded during the January African Waterbird Census counts were 259,767 in 1995, 201,133 in 1996 and 324,510 in 1997.

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

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   

IBA Monitoring

2008 very high very unfavourable medium
Habitat
Good - based on reliable and complete / representative data

Agricultural expansion and intensification livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - agro-industry grazing, ranching or farmin happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Agricultural expansion and intensification livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - nomadic grazing happening now whole area/population (>90%) slow but significant deterioration high
Agricultural expansion and intensification marine and freshwater aquaculture - subsistence/artisinal aquaculture happening now whole area/population (>90%) moderate to rapid deterioration very high
Climate change and severe weather drought happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Climate change and severe weather storms and floods past (and unlikely to return) and no longer limiting whole area/population (>90%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Climate change and severe weather temperature extremes happening now whole area/population (>90%) slow but significant deterioration high
Human intrusions and disturbance recreational activities happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Human intrusions and disturbance war, civil unrest and military exercises happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Natural system modifications other ecosystem modifications happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species direct mortality of trigger species - hunting and trapping happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species direct mortality of trigger species - persecution/control happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species habitat effects - gathering plants happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Residential and commercial development housing and urban areas happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Residential and commercial development tourism and recreation areas happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Transportation and service corridors roads and railroads happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Transportation and service corridors utility & service lines happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low

Wetlands (inland) Riverine floodplains  0 0 poor (40-69%) poor (40-69%) very unfavourable

Most of site (50-90%) covered (including the most critical parts for important bird species)  A management plan exists but it is out of date or not comprehensive  Substantive conservation measures are being implemented but these are not comprehensive and are limited by resources and capacity  medium 

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.

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 26/11/2014

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