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Location Tunisia, Medenine
Central coordinates 10o 34.00' East  33o 39.00' North
IBA criteria A4i, A4iii
Area 2,100 ha
Altitude 0 - 5m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Association "Les Amis des Oiseaux"

Site description The site is an extensive coastal lagoon with an intertidal area covering 1,600 ha. It is situated on the southern edge of the Gulf of Gabès, 50 km north of the town of Medenine. It is fringed by saltmarshes; the vegetation is therefore predominantly halophytic, dominated by Halocnemum, Salicornia and Suaeda species.

Key Biodiversity See Box for key species. See under Kneiss (site TN032) for the ornithological importance of the Gulf of Gabès; many of the species recorded there occur at Gourine. The area is important for wintering Larus genei, L. ridibundus and Sterna caspia. There are breeding populations of Larus cachinnans and Sterna albifrons. In addition, six species of the Mediterranean North Africa biome (A01) and four of the Sahara–Sindian biome (A02) occur at this site (see Table 2).

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
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo winter  10,000-12,000 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Larus cachinnans winter  2,000-6,000 individuals  A4i  Not Recognised 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  20,000 individuals  unknown  A4iii   

IBA Monitoring

2009 medium very unfavourable medium
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Climate change and severe weather storms and floods likely in long term (beyond 4 years) majority/most of area/population (50-90%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Phoenicopterus roseus Greater Flamingo 1325 2500 individuals 100 favourable
Platalea leucorodia Eurasian Spoonbill 120 100 individuals 84 near favourable
Phalacrocorax carbo Great Cormorant 10000 37 individuals 1 very unfavourable
Species group - waterbirds A4iii 20000 8000 individuals 40 unfavourable

Whole area of site (>90%) covered by appropriate conservation designation  A management plan exists but it is out of date or not comprehensive  Some limited conservation initiatives are in place  medium 

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
not utilised -

References Azafzaf (1999a), Gaultier (1988a), Meininger (1998).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Gourine. Downloaded from on 28/10/2016

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