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Location Tanzania, Arusha,Kilimanjaro
Central coordinates 36o 50.00' East  2o 50.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4i
Area 280,000 ha
Altitude 1,000 - 1,900m
Year of IBA assessment 2001





Site description This site covers the dry, rather open habitat in the western rain-shadow of Mount Kilimanjaro. The western limit of this site is the main road running north from Arusha to the international border with Kenya, which forms the northern boundary of the site. The eastern boundary extends onto the western foothills of Mount Kilimanjaro (TZ003). The southern boundary is formed by West Kilimanjaro Ranch, an area of partially degraded grassland. Several farms and small settlements are included within this site. It is therefore one of the few IBAs in Tanzania that includes a substantial human population. Quite large areas of open short-grass habitat occupy the poorer soils while the woodland grades from Acacia–Commiphora thicket to open woodlands of Acacia xanthophloea and A. tortilis in the north-east of the site. Numerous isolated hills rise above the relatively flat landscape. The Ngare Nanyuki river flows north-east off Mount Meru to form seasonally flooded habitat. The only permanent water is found along the Kenyan border in the excavations of the abandoned Meacham mine and, although this water is alkaline, it provides safe drinking for wild mammals and herds of Masai livestock as well as birds. To the north the site borders Amboseli National Park (IBA KE042) in Kenya.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 3 for key species. Some 400 species have been recorded in the area. The gap between Mounts Kilimanjaro and Meru is an important corridor for Palearctic migrants, especially raptors and storks. Circus macrourus and Falco naumanni are common passage migrants, as are Hieraaetus pennatus, Aquila nipalensis, Aquila pomarina and Buteo buteo, while Falco amurensis has been recorded in reasonable numbers. Large flocks of both Ciconia ciconia and Ciconia abdimii are seen regularly. The mature Acacia woodland, especially in the south-west, holds a wide variety of birds uncommon in Tanzania such as Colius leucocephalus, Prodotiscus regulus, Anthoscopus musculus, Sylvietta brachyura and Anthus caffer. Rarer Palearctic passerines such as Sylvia nisoria and Irania gutturalis also use this habitat.The open short-grass plains support three species of sandgrouse, Sagittarius serpentarius and Ardeotis kori. The site is the eastern limit in Tanzania of the ranges of Falco rupicoloides, Calandrella somalica and Pseudalaemon fremantlii. The small, isolated and threatened Tanzanian population of Chersomanes albofasciata is known from only two areas of open grassland in the western part of this site. The taxonomic status of this population is unclear and under review. The population of Anas capensis on the permanent alkaline pools at Sinya Mine often exceeds 100 birds; several thousand Phoenicopterus minor are also regularly recorded here. Charadrius pallidus breeds, as does Himantopus himantopus. One species of the Serengeti plains EBA and 18 of the Afrotropical Highlands biome have been recorded at this site (see Tables 2 and 3).

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals include Loxodonta africana (EN), Acinonyx jubatus (VU) and Litocranius walleri (LR/cd) is present.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Trachyphonus darnaudii resident  2000  present  A3  Not Recognised 
Black-throated Barbet Tricholaema melanocephala resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-and-yellow Barbet Trachyphonus erythrocephalus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Yellow-necked Francolin Pternistis leucoscepus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor non-breeding  4,000 individuals  A1  Near Threatened 
Eastern Chanting-goshawk Melierax poliopterus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Buff-crested Bustard Lophotis gindiana resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Caspian Plover Charadrius asiaticus non-breeding  1995  200 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Black-faced Sandgrouse Pterocles decoratus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Fischer's Lovebird Agapornis fischeri resident  2000  present  A1, A3  Near Threatened 
White-bellied Go-away-bird Criniferoides leucogaster resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-headed Mousebird Colius leucocephalus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Abyssinian Scimitarbill Rhinopomastus minor resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Von der Decken's Hornbill Tockus deckeni resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rosy-patched Bush-shrike Rhodophoneus cruentus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Long-tailed Fiscal Lanius cabanisi resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Taita Fiscal Lanius dorsalis resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-throated Tit Parus fringillinus resident  2000  present  A1, A3  Least Concern 
Mouse-coloured Penduline-tit Anthoscopus musculus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pink-breasted Lark Mirafra poecilosterna resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rufous Short-toed Lark Calandrella somalica resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Short-tailed Lark Pseudalaemon fremantlii resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Ashy Cisticola Cisticola cinereolus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Tiny Cisticola Cisticola nanus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Grey Wren-warbler Camaroptera simplex resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Banded Warbler Sylvia boehmi resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Scaly Chatterer Turdoides aylmeri resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rufous Chatterer Turdoides rubiginosa resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Northern Pied-babbler Turdoides hypoleuca resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-breasted White-eye Zosterops abyssinicus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Hildebrandt's Starling Lamprotornis hildebrandti resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Fischer's Starling Spreo fischeri resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bare-eyed Thrush Turdus tephronotus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
African Grey Flycatcher Bradornis microrhynchus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Kenya Violet-backed Sunbird Anthreptes orientalis resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Parrot-billed Sparrow Passer gongonensis resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Swahili Sparrow Passer suahelicus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-headed Buffalo-weaver Dinemellia dinemelli resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Speke's Weaver Ploceus spekei resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Fire-fronted Bishop Euplectes diadematus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Blue-capped Cordonbleu Uraeginthus cyanocephalus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Purple Grenadier Uraeginthus ianthinogaster resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-rumped Waxbill Estrilda charmosyna resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Grey-headed Silverbill Lonchura griseicapilla resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Steel-blue Whydah Vidua hypocherina resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Straw-tailed Whydah Vidua fischeri resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pangani Longclaw Macronyx aurantiigula resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Kenya Grosbeak-canary Serinus buchanani resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-bellied Canary Serinus dorsostriatus resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 
Somali Golden-breasted Bunting Emberiza poliopleura resident  2000  present  A3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Longido Game Controlled Area 150,000 protected area contained by site 150,000  

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial   9%
Grassland   90%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
hunting -
other -
Notes: Cutting of mature Acacia trees for charcoal.

References Baker (in press), Bennun and Njoroge (1999).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Longido Game Controlled Area. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/12/2014

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