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Location Tanzania, Shinyanga,Singida
Central coordinates 34o 18.00' East  4o 6.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A4i, A4iii
Area 12,000 ha
Altitude 1,030 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Site description This rather shallow lake occupies a depression along the Wembere river, at the extreme western end of the Mbulu Highlands and north of the small town of Sekenke, where the seasonal Manonga river flows in from the west. At high water the eastern edge of the lake abuts the foothills of the highlands, which rise to 1,587 m within a few kilometres of the lake. To the north, the lake overflows into the Sibiti river which enters Lake Eyasi (TZ023), 35 km to the north-east. The eastern shoreline shelves very gently with shallow water, exposed mud and short vegetation. There are stands of Aeschynomene, the extent of which is unclear. Belts of dense sedge that skirt the eastern shoreline are used for thatching and grazing and are extensively burnt each dry season. No information is available for the western side of the lake.

Key Biodiversity See Box for key species. The eastern shoreline is favoured by waterbirds with Glareola pratincola, Limosa limosa (>2,700), Philomachus pugnax, Calidris minuta, Plectropterus gambensis (>2,400), Phoenicopterus minor and Balearica regulorum (>100) amongst species recorded in 1995. Thousands of Riparia riparia and tens of thousands of Hirundo rustica feed along the foothills and over the lake shore. Discussions with local fishermen have indicated the presence of a large, mixed-species heronry in most years.

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
Greater Flamingo Phoenicopterus roseus winter  1995  3,000 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor winter  1995  357,000 individuals  A1, A4i  Near Threatened 
Yellow-billed Stork Mycteria ibis winter  1995  1,160 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta winter  1995  4,000 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola winter  1995  1,500 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Sterna nilotica winter  1995  2,000 individuals  A4i  Not Recognised 
White-winged Tern Chlidonias leucopterus winter  1995  20,000 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1995  100,000-499,999 individuals  unknown  A4iii   


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   23%
Wetlands (inland)   49%
Grassland   27%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
fisheries/aquaculture -
other -
Notes: Cutting sedge for thatching.

References Baker (1997), Stronach (1968).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Lake Kitangire. Downloaded from on 21/10/2016

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