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Location Iraq, Wasit
Central coordinates 46o 38.00' East  32o 10.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A4i, A4iii, B1i, B2
Area 140,000 ha
Altitude 30 m
Year of IBA assessment 1994

Nature Iraq (Affiliate)

Site description Haur al Sa-adiyah constitutes the largest in a chain of haurs stretching for 120 km from near Ali Al Gharbi in the north to Haur Al Hammar in the south. The haur is a vast shallow lake of 1,400 km2 bordered on the east by the River Tigris and on the west by the Dujaila Canal. The small north-western section of the haur is known as Haur Umm Roij (1,500 ha). When visited in January 1979, there was little emergent vegetation at the east end. The Dujaila Canal eventually flows into the haur at its southernmost point and this area is known as Haur Dujaila.

Key Biodiversity The only ornithological surveys have been in 1967, 1968 and 1979 (all in January). The surrounding fertile plains provide excellent feeding habitat for geese and cranes. The haur is particularly important for Anser anser, Tadorna ferruginea, Anas platyrhynchos, A. crecca, A. acuta, A. clypeata, Phoenicopterus ruber (900 in 1979), Grus grus, Fulica atra and shorebirds (Georg and Savage 1970a, b). The haur was listed as a wetland of international importance by Carp (1980).

Non-bird biodiversity: No information available to BirdLife International.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Greylag Goose Anser anser winter  1979  1,005 individuals  poor  B1i  Least Concern 
Gadwall Mareca strepera winter  1967  5,000 individuals  poor  A4i, B1i  Least Concern 
Eurasian Wigeon Mareca penelope winter  1967-1968  1,429-2,850 individuals  poor  A4i, B1i  Least Concern 
Marbled Teal Marmaronetta angustirostris breeding  1997  50-249 individuals  poor  A1, A4i, B1i, B2  Vulnerable 
Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca winter  1967  30 individuals  poor  B1i, B2  Near Threatened 
Eastern Imperial Eagle Aquila heliaca winter  1985  3 individuals  poor  B2  Vulnerable 
White-tailed Sea-eagle Haliaeetus albicilla winter  1985  2 individuals  poor  B2  Least Concern 
Common Crane Grus grus winter  1979  2,600 individuals  poor  A4i, B1i  Least Concern 
Charadrius alexandrinus winter  1979  7,000 individuals  poor  A4i, B1i  Not Recognised 
Dunlin Calidris alpina winter  1979  9,500 individuals  poor  A4i, B1i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1967-1979  22,500-25,000 individuals  poor  A4iii   

IBA Monitoring

2013 high not assessed negligible

Agriculture and aquaculture annual & perennial non-timber crops - small-holder farming happening now majority/most of area/population (50-90%) slow but significant deterioration high

Little/none of site covered (<10%)  No management planning has taken place  Not assessed  negligible 


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

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
unknown -

Acknowledgements Information compiled by Dr D. A. Scott and D. J. Brooks, reviewed by Dr Khalid Y. Al-Dabbagh and Dr Hanna Y. Siman.

References Georg and Savage (1970a,b), Georg and Vielliard (1970), Scott and Carp (1982).

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Haur Al Sa'adiyah. Downloaded from on 22/10/2016

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