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Location Zambia, North Western
Central coordinates 24o 23.00' East  11o 30.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A3
Area 10,000 ha
Altitude 1,360 - 1,400m
Year of IBA assessment 2001

Zambian Ornithological Society (Partner Designate)



Site description The site lies about 30 km north of Mwinilunga and comprises the lower half of the Chitunta river and a section of the Luakera, at the confluence of the two. Both flow through wide grasslands that are a mixture of dambo, flood-plain and dry plain. There are doubtless many similar sites in the district but this remains the best-known and most studied due to its accessibility. It is bisected by the Mwinilunga–Ikelenge road.

Key Biodiversity See Box and Table 3 for key species. This is the best known locality for Macronyx grimwoodi which is common in the wet grassland. Ploceus temporalis has a very restricted range in Zambia and breeds colonially in shrubs along the main channel of the Luakera. Jynx ruficollis is perhaps regular in the stunted miombo and has not been regularly recorded anywhere else in Zambia. Other birds include Mirafra angolensis, Hirundo nigrorufa and Cisticola dambo. Among species of global conservation concern, Gallinago media is a regular wintering visitor and Macronyx grimwoodi is a common breeding resident, while Circus macrourus is an irregular passage migrant and Grus carunculatus is an occasional visitor.

Non-bird biodiversity: The butterfly Eicochrysops pinheyi, a Zambian endemic, and the endemic dragonfly

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Dickinson's Kestrel Falco dickinsoni resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Great Snipe Gallinago media winter  present  A1  Near Threatened 
Coppery-tailed Coucal Centropus cupreicaudus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Pale-billed Hornbill Lophoceros pallidirostris resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Souza's Shrike Lanius souzae resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Rufous-bellied Tit Parus rufiventris resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Miombo Tit Parus griseiventris resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-and-rufous Swallow Hirundo nigrorufa resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-throated Swallow Hirundo rufigula resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Angola Lark Mirafra angolensis resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chirping Cisticola Cisticola pipiens resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Black-tailed Cisticola Cisticola dambo resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Miombo Wren-warbler Camaroptera undosa resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Red-capped Crombec Sylvietta ruficapilla resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Angola Babbler Turdoides hartlaubii resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Kurrichane Thrush Turdus libonyanus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Miombo Scrub-robin Erythropygia barbata resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Bocage's Weaver Ploceus temporalis resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Broad-tailed Paradise-whydah Vidua obtusa resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Fuelleborn's Longclaw Macronyx fuellebornii resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Grimwood's Longclaw Macronyx grimwoodi resident  1998  present  A1, A3  Data Deficient 
Black-eared Seedeater Serinus mennelli resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 

IBA Monitoring

2005 low favourable negligible
Habitat
-

Agricultural expansion and intensification annual & perennial non-timber crops - small-holder farming happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species fishing & harvesting aquatic resources - unintentional effects: subsistence/small scale happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low
Over-exploitation, persecution and control of species hunting & collecting terrestrial animals - unintentional effects (species is not the target) happening now small area/few individuals (<10%) no or imperceptible deterioration low

Forest   0 0 good (> 90%) good (> 90%) favourable

Little/none of site covered (<10%)  No management planning has taken place  Very little or no conservation action taking place  negligible 

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest   100%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
fisheries/aquaculture -

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Chitunta Plain. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 28/12/2014

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