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Location South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal
Central coordinates 29o 40.00' East  29o 17.00' South
IBA criteria A1
Area 186 ha
Altitude 1,600 - 1,620m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

BirdLife South Africa



Summary The site is located 32 km west of Mooi River, in the foothills of the Drakensberg. Highmoor. The vegetation consists of grasslands and wetlands classified as Highland Sourveld. The vlei and surrounding grasslands hold Wattled Crane Bugeranus carunculatus, Grey Crowned Crane Balearica regulorum and Blue Crane Anthropoides paradiseus.

Site description The site is located 32 km west of Mooi river, in the foothills of the Drakensberg. Highmoor, a division of the Natal Drakensberg Park (IBA ZA048) bounds it on one side, and the other boundaries abut onto private land. The terrain is almost flat. The vegetation consists of grasslands and wetlands classified as Highland Sourveld. The original grass community has been severely modified by past use as farmland. Permanent wetlands are dominated by Phragmites and Typha, with species of Cyperus, Pycreus and Juncus on the fringes.

Key Biodiversity See Box for key species. The vlei and surrounding grasslands hold Grus carunculatus, Balearica regulorum and Grus paradisea. Botaurus stellaris is regularly recorded, and is a speciality of the vlei, which also holds Circus ranivorus and Ciconia nigra. Neotis denhami, and Tyto capensis frequent the surrounding grasslands.

Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.

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 
Wattled Crane Bugeranus carunculatus resident  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Blue Crane Anthropoides paradiseus resident  present  A1  Vulnerable 

IBA Monitoring

2014 high very unfavourable medium
Habitat
Medium - based upon reliable but incomplete / partially representative data

Agriculture and aquaculture livestock farming and ranching (includes forest grazing) - nomadic grazing happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
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
Human intrusions and disturbance recreational activities happening now whole area/population (>90%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now whole area/population (>90%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
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
Invasive & other problematic species, genes & diseases problematic native species/diseases - named species likely in short term (within 4 years) some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Natural system modifications dams & water management/use - abstraction of ground water (domestic use) happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Natural system modifications dams & water management/use - abstraction of ground water (unknown use) happening now some of area/population (10-49%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Natural system modifications dams & water management/use - small dams happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Residential and commercial development housing and urban areas happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Transportation and service corridors roads and railroads happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium

Grassland   0 0 poor (40-69%) moderate (70-90%) very unfavourable
Wetlands (inland)   0 0 moderate (70-90%) moderate (70-90%) unfavourable

Little/none of site covered (<10%)  A comprehensive and appropriate management plan exists that aims to maintain or improve the populations of qualifying bird species  The conservation measures needed for the site are being comprehensively and effectively implemented  medium 

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Grassland   -
Wetlands (inland)   -
Forest   100%

Land use

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

References Guthrie (1995).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Hlatikulu. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 30/08/2015

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