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Location South Africa, Free State
Central coordinates 29o 34.00' East  28o 13.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A4i
Area 9,300 ha
Altitude 1,700 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

BirdLife South Africa

Summary This site consists of a wetland on the private farms Wilge Rivier, Chatsworth and Bedford c. 20 km east of Harrismith. The farms lie in the Grassland Biome at an altitude of 1 700 m a.s.l. and consist primarily of flat grassland plains. White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi has been recorded at the site.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Southern Bald Ibis Geronticus calvus resident  present  A1  Vulnerable 
White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi winter  1998  30-50 individuals  unknown  A1, A4i  Critically Endangered 

IBA Monitoring

2006 very high not assessed not assessed

Agricultural expansion and intensification livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - small-holder grazing, ranching or farming happening now whole area/population (>90%) slow but significant deterioration high
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now whole area/population (>90%) very rapid to severe deterioration very high

Forest   0 0 poor (40-69%) poor (40-69%) very unfavourable
Grassland Grassland - edaphic, wet  0 0 poor (40-69%) poor (40-69%) very unfavourable
Wetlands (inland)   0 0 good (> 90%) moderate (70-90%) near favourable


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Grassland Grassland - edaphic, wet  -
Wetlands (inland) Permanent herbaceous swamps and bogs  -
Artificial - terrestrial   9%
Shrubland   83%
Forest   7%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
water management 80%
agriculture -
nature conservation and research 100%

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bedford-Chatsworth. Downloaded from on 06/05/2015

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