|Central coordinates||29o 36.00' East 8o 43.00' South|
|IBA criteria||A1, A3, A4i|
|Altitude||900 - 1,425m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Ornithological information See Box and Table 3 for key species. Waterbirds can be numerous at times and the lake shore has in the past supported large numbers of migrant waders. Balaeniceps rex was once a regularly seen resident, but its recent status is uncertain—it is likely to have suffered from the increase in water-level. In 1955, over 600 pairs of Phoenicopterus minor nested, probably unsuccessfully, although the site lies on the periphery of this species’s normal breeding range. More than 3,000 Pelecanus onocrotalus were present in 1954. Species characteristic of the thicket include Ceuthmochares aereus, Pitta angolensis, Nicator gularis, Telophorus multicolor and Ploceus bicolor. Birds of more open habitats include Corythaixoides personatus and Uraeginthus bengalus and the miombo remains largely unexplored.
Site description Lying in the far north of the country, between Lakes Mweru and Tanganyika, the park encompasses a third lake, from which it takes its name. Until recently the water-level fluctuated both seasonally and over longer cycles and much of the wetland was swamp. However, a dam has been built and a large proportion of this habitat has been flooded. The lake and surrounding areas lie at comparatively low altitude, between 900–1,000 m, and itigi thicket is the dominant vegetation-type. Further west, the land gradually rises and reaches over 1,400 m where the terrain is rugged, hilly and clad in miombo. A 0>single road bisects the park running roughly north–south along the western shore of the lake, and there are no tourist facilities.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Lesser Flamingo Phoeniconaias minor||breeding||1955||600 breeding pairs||-||A1||Near Threatened|
|African Openbill Anastomus lamelligerus||non-breeding||1998||1,000 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Cattle Egret Bubulcus ibis||non-breeding||1998||10,000 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Shoebill Balaeniceps rex||resident||1998||unknown [units unknown]||-||A1||Vulnerable|
|Great White Pelican Pelecanus onocrotalus||non-breeding||1998||1,800 individuals||-||A4i||Least Concern|
|Coppery-tailed Coucal Centropus cupreicaudus||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Boehm's Bee-eater Merops boehmi||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Chirping Cisticola Cisticola pipiens||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Katanga Masked-weaver Ploceus katangae||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Brown Firefinch Lagonosticta nitidula||resident||1998||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Protected area||Designation||Area (ha)||Relationship with IBA||Overlap with IBA (ha)|
|Mweru-Wantipa||National Park||313,400||is identical to site||313,400|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Artificial landscapes (terrestrial)||1%|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
|nature conservation and research||-|
Other biodiversity A wide variety of mammals occur, including Tragelaphus spekii (LR/nt) and Cephalophus silvicultor (LR/nt).
Management considerations The level of protection is low and large mammals have suffered from illegal hunting. Threats to the birds and the vegetation are probably few, but the effect of the dam requires further investigation.
References Brown (1957), Clarke and Loe (1974).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Mweru Wantipa National Park. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 25/05/2013
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