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Location Zambia, Luapula
Central coordinates 28o 38.00' East  9o 42.00' South
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4i
Area 90,000 ha
Altitude 900 m
Year of IBA assessment 2005

Zambian Ornithological Society (Partner Designate)

Site description A large area of Cyperus papyrus swamp in the lowest reaches of the Luapula river as it fans out to meet Lake Mweru. Its western boundary is the main river channel, which is also the international border with the Democratic Republic of Congo, and in the east the wetland has a well-defined edge. The tarmac Mansa–Nchelenge road runs a little way above and parallel to the shoreline, which is fairly densely populated. Within the swamp are scattered open lagoons and a network of small channels, kept navigable by fishermen and inhabitants of the larger islands.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Southern Pochard Netta erythrophthalma non-breeding  1954  1,000 individuals  A4i  Least Concern 
Dickinson's Kestrel Falco dickinsoni resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Coppery-tailed Coucal Centropus cupreicaudus resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Chirping Cisticola Cisticola pipiens resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
White-winged Scrub-warbler Bradypterus carpalis resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Papyrus Yellow Warbler Chloropeta gracilirostris resident  1998  present  A1, A3  Vulnerable 
Angola Babbler Turdoides hartlaubii resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Katanga Masked-weaver Ploceus katangae resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 
Brown Firefinch Lagonosticta nitidula resident  1998  present  A3  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland)   22%
Shrubland   27%
Grassland   30%
Forest   19%

Land use

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

Other biodiversity Mammals at the site include Tragelaphus spekii (LR/nt).

References Dowsett et al. (1999), Leonard and Beel (1996b, 1999).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Luapula Mouth. Downloaded from on 22/10/2014

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife