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Location Saudi Arabia, Ash Sharqiyah
Central coordinates 50o 0.00' East  25o 31.80' North
IBA criteria A4iii, B1i, B2
Area 7,500 ha
Altitude 120 m
Year of IBA assessment 1994

Saudi Wildlife Commission (Affiliate)



Site description A long, narrow, man-made river, the only large-scale freshwater habitat in the Eastern Province, running east-south-east from Hofuf and Abqaiq towards al-'Uqair. It is formed by run-off from al-Hasa oasis and sewage effluent from Hofuf, Abqaiq and numerous small towns, and frequently disappears under sand-dunes, to surface again a few kilometres further on. There are numerous pools of up to c.250 ha, often surrounded by large reedbeds. The rest of the area consists of sandy gravel plain and sand-dunes interspersed with sabkhahs and aeolian sand-fields.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black Francolin Francolinus francolinus resident  1993  rare [units unknown]  B2  Least Concern 
Ferruginous Duck Aythya nyroca breeding  1983  10 breeding pairs  poor  B2  Near Threatened 
Great Bittern Botaurus stellaris winter  1993  present [units unknown]  B2  Least Concern 
Black-winged Stilt Himantopus himantopus winter  1983  1,900 individuals  poor  B1i  Least Concern 
A4iii Species group - waterbirds winter  1993  20,000 individuals  medium  A4iii   

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Desert   major
Artificial - aquatic   major

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
hunting major
tourism/recreation major
water management major

Other biodiversity None known to BirdLife International.

Acknowledgements Data-sheet compiled by P. Symens.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2014) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Al-Hasa lagoons. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 17/04/2014

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