email a friend
printable version
Location Nigeria, Borno
Central coordinates 13o 20.00' East  11o 32.00' North
IBA criteria A3
Area 68,600 ha
Altitude 35 - 100m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Nigerian Conservation Foundation

Site description Sambisa lies within the catchment of the Yedseram river, south-east of Maiduguri in the north-east of the country. The dominant vegetation is Sudan–Guinea Savanna but, as a result of human activities, areas of the reserve have taken on a more Sahelian aspect. Dominant tree species include Detarium macrocarpum, Ficus spp., Vitex doniana, Anogeissus leiocarpus, Balanites aegyptiaca, Prosopis africana, Acacia spp., Piliostigma thonningii, Combretum spp., Adansonia digitata, Diospyros mespiliformis, Tamarindus indica and Terminalia spp.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 3 for key species. To date, 62 species have been recorded, including four species of the Sudan–Guinea Savanna biome (A04) (see Table 3). Nationally uncommon species include Terathopius ecaudatus, Sagittarius serpentarius and Ardeotis arabs. The site is also thought to be the last in the country at which Struthio camelus occurs.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals of global conservation concern include Loxodonta africana (EN), Hippotragus equinus (LR/cd) and Alcelaphus buselaphus (LR/cd).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Arabian Bustard Ardeotis arabs resident  1999  present  A3  Near Threatened 
Savile's Bustard Lophotis savilei resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 
African Collared-dove Streptopelia roseogrisea 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 
Sudan Golden Sparrow Passer luteus resident  1999  present  A3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Sambisa Game Reserve 68,600 is identical to site 68,600  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
fisheries/aquaculture -
forestry -
hunting -
nature conservation and research -

References Ebin (1983).

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: Sambisa Game Reserve. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016

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