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Location South Africa, KwaZulu-Natal
Central coordinates 29o 29.00' East  30o 30.00' South
IBA criteria A1
Area 120 ha
Altitude 1,300 m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

BirdLife South Africa



Summary The site is located 5 km northeast of Kokstad, at an altitude of 1 300 m a.s.l. It lies within a narrow finger of Highland Sourveld to Cymbopogon-Themeda Veld Transition. It occupies the valley bottom along the meandering course of the Manzimnyama River amidst agricultural land. This site contains White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi.

Site description The site is located 5 km north-east of Kokstad, occupying the valley bottom along the meandering course of the Manzimnyama river amidst agricultural land. It lies within a narrow finger of transition between highland sourveld and Cymbopogon-Themeda veld. The permanently saturated to flooded areas are Typha-dominated, particularly the lowest depressions in the vlei. Tall sedges of Cyperus and Mariscus are locally dominant in less permanently and deeply flooded conditions, often with other Cyperus, Schoenoplectus and Juncus. The sedges extend into the seasonally flooded areas, where they occur alongside Eleocharis, Leersia and Paspalum. Seasonal or ephemeral flooding in sedge meadow and wet grassland is often extensive, and up to 50 cm deep, but in some years much of the flood-plain remains almost completely dry.

Key Biodiversity See Box for key species. This is one of only four sites in South Africa known to have held Sarothrura ayresi regularly over the last eight years. This site has held up to four Sarothrura ayresi in years of good flooding and, if vegetation were allowed to develop more naturally, without annual burning and spring grazing, it would probably support more than twice this number. Crex crex is probably annual in grassland around the vlei. Botaurus stellaris is resident and is presumed to breed. The winter reedbed roost of Balearica regulorum builds up to numbers in excess of 100.

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
White-winged Flufftail Sarothrura ayresi winter  present  A1  Critically Endangered 

IBA Monitoring

2013 high very unfavourable negligible
Habitat
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%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
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
Agriculture and aquaculture wood and pulp plantations (includes afforestation) - agro-industry plantations happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Biological resource use hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - intentional use (species being assessed is the target) likely in short term (within 4 years) 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) likely in short term (within 4 years) some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Human intrusions and disturbance work and other activities happening now whole area/population (>90%) slow but significant deterioration high
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 happening now some of area/population (10-49%) 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%) moderate to rapid deterioration high
Natural system modifications other ecosystem modifications likely in long term (beyond 4 years) some of area/population (10-49%) moderate to rapid deterioration medium
Pollution domestic & urban waste water - type unknown/unrecorded likely in long term (beyond 4 years) majority/most of area/population (50-90%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Pollution industrial & military effluents - type unknown/unrecorded happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low
Residential and commercial development tourism and recreation areas happening now some of area/population (10-49%) slow but significant deterioration medium
Transportation and service corridors roads and railroads likely in long term (beyond 4 years) small area/few individuals (<10%) slow but significant deterioration low

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

Sarothrura ayresi White-winged Flufftail 4 4 individuals 100 not assessed
Bugeranus carunculatus Wattled Crane 3 3 individuals 100 favourable

Little/none of site covered (<10%)  No management planning has taken place  Some limited conservation initiatives are in place  negligible 

Habitats

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

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
nature conservation and research 100%

References Begg (1989), Taylor (1994, 1997a,b).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2015) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Penny Park. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 05/09/2015

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