|Location||South Africa, Free State|
|Central coordinates||29o 23.00' East 28o 18.00' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A4i|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Summary The farm Murphy's Rust 209 is located c. 20 km east of Harrismith. It lies in the Grassland Biome and consists primarily of flat grassland plains, most of which are used for growing maize, wheat, soya beans and pasture grass, while the remaining natural grassland on the slopes is grazed by sheep and cattle. The site holds White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi.
Site description The farm Murphy’s Rust 209 is located c.20 km east of Harrismith. It consists primarily of flat grassveld plains, most of which are used for growing maize, wheat, soya beans and pasture grass, while the remaining natural grassland on the slopes is grazed by sheep and cattle. An important wetland is situated on the property. Located in rolling high-altitude grassland, the wetland is dominated at both its upper and lower ends by beds of Phragmites; at the lower end, it has dense well-grown beds of Eleocharis, much trampled by cattle, and some good stands of Typha and Leersia in shallow water. The middle section of the wetland comprises excellent habitat, hardly damaged or penetrated by cattle: it has extensive areas of Cyperus, with Typha growing through it in patches or as single stems, Schoenoplectus at the edges and occasionally wet grass and forbs.
Key Biodiversity See Box for key species. The site holds Sarothrura ayresi, principally in areas of mixed Cyperus, Schoenoplectus and Typha. There is good habitat for Ixobrychus minutus, and it is conceivable that Botaurus stellaris might occur if the site was not extensively disturbed or the reedbeds penetrated by cattle.
Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi||winter||1998||10-15 individuals||unknown||A1, A4i||Critically Endangered|
|Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data|
|Agriculture and aquaculture||annual & perennial non-timber crops - agro-industry farming||happening now||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Energy production and mining||oil and gas drilling||likely in short term (within 4 years)||some of area/population (10-49%)||moderate to rapid deterioration||medium|
|Invasive & other problematic species, genes & diseases||invasive non-native/alien species/diseases - named species||happening now||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Natural system modifications||dams & water management/use - abstraction of surface water (agricultural use)||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||majority/most of area/population (50-90%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Natural system modifications||fire & fire suppression - increase in fire frequency/intensity||likely in short term (within 4 years)||majority/most of area/population (50-90%)||very rapid to severe deterioration||high|
|Pollution||domestic & urban waste water - sewage||likely in short term (within 4 years)||majority/most of area/population (50-90%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Residential and commercial development||housing and urban areas||likely in long term (beyond 4 years)||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Transportation and service corridors||roads and railroads||happening now||some of area/population (10-49%)||slow but significant deterioration||medium|
|Grassland||Grassland - highveld||0||0||very poor (< 40%)||moderate (70-90%)||very unfavourable|
|Wetlands (inland)||Permanent herbaceous swamps and bogs||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)|
|Grassland||Grassland - highveld||-|
|Wetlands (inland)||Permanent herbaceous swamps and bogs||-|
|Artificial - terrestrial||90%|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||-|
References Taylor (1997a,b).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Murphy's Rust. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 13/10/2015
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