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Location Senegal, Thiès
Central coordinates 17o 1.00' West  14o 26.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i
Area 14,000 ha
Altitude 0 - 74m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Site description The site consists of the coastal strip (c. 70 km long) south of Dakar, running from Bargny (20 km south-east of Dakar), south to the village of Mbodiène, which lies just north of Joal-Fadiouth (site SN012). It consists of mainly sandy, narrow beaches, offshore sandbars, dunes and saltmarsh, crossed by several small rivers and estuaries. There are a number of shallow lagoons and temporary wetlands in depressions behind the dunes, of varying size and salinity (depending on seasonal rainfall), some with associated mudflats and saltmarsh. The lagoons include Yène-Tode (c.150 ha), Popenguine (c.10 ha), Somone estuary (c.30 ha) and Sarène. Vegetation is generally sparse; there are some thickets of Tamarix sp. on higher ground behind the dunes and, towards the southern end of the site, mangroves (Rhizophora sp. and Avicennia sp.) on the mudflats. Along c.15 km at the northern end of the site there are sandy hills and cliffs with occasional rocky outcrops behind the dunes, reaching a maximum height of 74 m. One of the rocky outcrops (Cap de Naze) lies just behind Popenguine Avifaunal Reserve, the only officially designated site within the IBA. Popenguine consists of a freshwater lagoon and marsh, contained by a man-made barrage.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Pink-backed Pelican Pelecanus rufescens breeding  1,500-2,000 breeding pairs  A4i  Least Concern 
Audouin's Gull Larus audouinii winter  160 individuals  A1  Near Threatened 
Slender-billed Gull Larus genei winter  1998  1,185 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Caspian Tern Hydroprogne caspia winter  1998  240 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Poponguine Nature Reserve 1,009 protected area contained by site 1,009  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   95%
Shrubland   4%

Land use

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

Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.

References Cormier and Baillon (1991), Dubois and Rouge (1990), Larivière (1998–1999), Schepers et al. (1998).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: La Petite Côte. Downloaded from on 27/08/2014

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