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Location South Africa, North-West Province,Northern Cape
Central coordinates 24o 33.00' East  28o 4.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A4i
Area 2,495 ha
Altitude 1,050 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

BirdLife South Africa

Summary Spitskop Dam lies 33 km southwest of Jan Kempdorp. This is one of the largest wetlands in the semi-arid Northern Cape region. It holds water permanently, and is a vital water source when all the other ephemeral and temporary wetlands in the region have dried up. The Dam lies on the Harts River. This wetland regularly supports over 10 000 birds, and has occasionally supported up to 18 000. 

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
South African Shelduck Tadorna cana winter  1,000-2,451 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus winter  50-100 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor winter  frequent  A1  Near Threatened 
African Spoonbill Platalea alba winter  120-257 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
African Darter Anhinga rufa winter  300-600 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Red-knobbed Coot Fulica cristata winter  2,000-5,425 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Pied Avocet Recurvirostra avosetta non-breeding  417 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Grassland Grassland - Semi-desert  -
Shrubland Shrubland - bushy Karroo  -
Wetlands (inland) Permanent herbaceous swamps and bogs  -

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
tourism/recreation -
water management 90%
nature conservation and research 12%
water management 80%

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Spitskop Dam. Downloaded from on 05/05/2015

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