|Central coordinates||33o 51.00' East 1o 42.00' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A2, A3|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Ornithological information See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. Ploceus spekeoides appears to be common in the vicinity of water, at least during the breeding season. A total of 47 nests were counted in early August 1996, but it has not been recorded breeding since. The type-specimen was obtained from Nariam in central Teso. However, the swamp around Nariam has since been drained. The status of this species is not well-known, but its distribution seems to be restricted to the north-eastern part of Uganda. There have been unconfirmed records from Rhino Camp in Arua and south of Lake Kyoga near Nakasongola.Ploceus castanops breeds extensively in the short papyrus fringing the lake. Other notable papyrus species include Bradypterus carpalis, Cisticola carruthersi and Serinus koliensis. There is suitable habitat for the globally threatened Chloropeta gracilirostris, but the species has yet to be recorded.
Site description The shallow Lake Bisina covers an area of about 192 km², and is some 32 km long by 6 km wide, with a thin strip of fringing papyrus (Cyperus papyrus) swamp. The major river entering the lake is the Apedura, which flows from the north. It has a 30-km long and up to 6.5-km wide flood-plain. The IBA includes the marsh at the south-western end of the lake, beginning with a shallow part dominated by submerged and partially submerged plants such as Nymphaea, Najas and Ceratophyllum. The lake edge is covered by floating grass Vossia that extends into seasonal Hyparrhenia-dominated grassland. Echinochloa grass also grows extensively in the swamp, forming strong mats on the edges of the marsh
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Shoebill Balaeniceps rex||resident||-||present [units unknown]||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Papyrus Gonolek Laniarius mufumbiri||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A1, A3||Near Threatened|
|Carruthers's Cisticola Cisticola carruthersi||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|White-winged Scrub-warbler Bradypterus carpalis||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Red-chested Sunbird Nectarinia erythrocerca||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Northern Brown-throated Weaver Ploceus castanops||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Fox's Weaver Ploceus spekeoides||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A1, A2, A3||Near Threatened|
|Papyrus Canary Serinus koliensis||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Lake Bisina Wetland System||Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar)||54,229||protected area contains site||25,000|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Artificial landscapes (terrestrial)||71%|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|Notes: Water for domestic use and food during famine.|
Other biodiversity Local communities hunt the ungulate Tragelaphus spekii (LR/nt).
Management considerations The area is not well-known and little information on biodiversity exists. Lake Bisina falls outside the Karamoja protected-area system and there are no conservation measures known or proposed for the lake or the surrounding areas. The lake is very important for the surrounding local communities in terms of fishing, transport, as a source of water for domestic use and a source of food (Nymphaea rhizomes) during famine. Local communities should be made aware of its importance so that they do not engage in activities likely to jeopardize its survival.Hunting of Balaeniceps rex with shotguns is common in this area and the docile behaviour of the species makes it easy prey. There is need for a public-awareness campaign to reduce the hunting pressure.
References Burgis and Symoens (1987), Mann (1976).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Lake Bisina. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/05/2013
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