|Location||South Africa, Northern Cape|
|Central coordinates||19o 0.00' East 29o 50.00' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A2, A3|
|Altitude||882 - 1,021m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Summary Situated 65 km southwest of Pofadder, this site consists of flat gravel plains with a red dune system that runs from north to south in the central and western portion of the property. This is one of few sites protecting both the globally threatened Red Lark Certhilauda burra, which inhabits the red sand dunes, and the near-threatened Sclater's Lark Spizocorys sclateri.
Site description Situated 65 km south-west of Pofadder, this site consists of five farms; Bitterputs (107 and 110) (29,555 ha), Bitterputs 111 (3,224 ha), Bosluis (5,101 ha), Kanaip (6,175 ha) and Oorstoot (1,485 ha). Bitterputs (107 and 110) forms the central portion of the IBA and consist mainly of flat gravel-plains with a red dune system that runs from north to south in the central and western portion of the property. Coarse, pale red sandy soils and red dunes form the southern portion of the fossil Koa river valley. Towards the east, sandy plains comprising perennial desert grassland and granitic gravel-plains occur.The koppies hold shrubs, e.g. Adenolobus and Rhus, especially on the mid-slopes and peaks, while the cobble-strewn bases are often covered with melkboom Euphorbia. The drainage lines support taller woody vegetation, such as Euclea, Ozoroa, Acacia and Tamarix shrubs. The gravel-plains are covered with a variety of sparse dwarf shrubs.
Key Biodiversity See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. This is one of few IBAs holding both the globally threatened Certhilauda burra (150–250 pairs), which inhabits the red sand-dunes, and the near-threatened Spizocorys sclateri (up to 100 individuals), which occurs erratically on the barren stony plains. The site also holds many of the Namib–Karoo biome-restricted species, as well as a host of other arid-zone birds. The plains support Circus maurus, Ardeotis kori, Neotis ludwigii, Eupodotis vigorsii, Cursorius rufus, Pterocles namaqua, Eremalauda starki, Cercomela tractrac, C. sinuata, C. schlegelii, Eremomela gregalis and Malcorus pectoralis. During good rains the nomadic Eremopterix australis, Serinus alario and Emberiza impetuani can be superabundant. Low scrubby vegetation holds Anthoscopus minutus and Nectarinia fusca. Rocky outcrops hold Euryptila subcinnamomea and the recently recognized Certhilauda subcoronata.
Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Black Harrier Circus maurus||resident||-||present||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Ludwig's Bustard Neotis ludwigii||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Endangered|
|Karoo Bustard Heterotetrax vigorsii||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Certhilauda subcoronata||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Not Recognised|
|Red Lark Certhilauda burra||resident||1998||present||-||A1, A2, A3||Vulnerable|
|Sclater's Lark Spizocorys sclateri||resident||1998||present||-||A1, A3||Near Threatened|
|Stark's Lark Eremalauda starki||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Black-eared Sparrow-lark Eremopterix australis||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Kopje Warbler Euryptila subcinnamomea||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Yellow-rumped Eremomela Eremomela gregalis||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Sicklewing Chat Cercomela sinuata||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Karoo Chat Cercomela schlegelii||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Tractrac Chat Cercomela tractrac||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Black-headed Canary Serinus alario||resident||1998||present||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data|
|Agriculture and aquaculture||livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - agro-industry grazing, ranching or farmin||happening now||majority/most of area/population (50-90%)||moderate to rapid deterioration||high|
|Biological resource use||hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - persecution/control||happening now||small area/few individuals (<10%)||slow but significant deterioration||low|
|Biological resource use||hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - unintentional effects (species is not the target)||happening now||small area/few individuals (<10%)||slow but significant deterioration||low|
|Climate change and severe weather||drought||likely in short term (within 4 years)||whole area/population (>90%)||no or imperceptible deterioration||low|
|Climate change and severe weather||habitat shifting and alteration||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||whole area/population (>90%)||very rapid to severe deterioration||high|
|Climate change and severe weather||temperature extremes||happening now||whole area/population (>90%)||slow but significant deterioration||high|
|Energy production and mining||mining and quarrying||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||small area/few individuals (<10%)||slow but significant deterioration||low|
|Energy production and mining||renewable energy||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||small area/few individuals (<10%)||slow but significant deterioration||low|
|Desert||Desert dunes||0||0||moderate (70-90%)||moderate (70-90%)||unfavourable|
|Desert||Gravel and sand plains||0||0||moderate (70-90%)||moderate (70-90%)||unfavourable|
|Wetlands (inland)||Saltpans||0||0||moderate (70-90%)||moderate (70-90%)||unfavourable|
|Little/none of site covered (<10%)||No management planning has taken place||Very little or no conservation action taking place||negligible|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Shrubland||Scrub - woodland||-|
|Desert||Desert dunes; Gravel and sand plains||-|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||100%|
References Allan (1989, 1994b), Dean (1989, 1995, 1997), Dean and Hockey (1989), Dean and Lombard (1994), Dean and Siegfried (1997), Dean et al. (1991), du Plessis (1992), Edwards (1974), Ryan and Bloomer (in press), Steyn and Myburgh (1989), Vernon (1986), Watkeys (1986, 1987).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bitterputs Conservation Area. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/05/2015
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