|Central coordinates||43o 35.00' East 12o 54.00' North|
|IBA criteria||A1, A3, A4iv, B1ii, B1iv, B2|
|Altitude||0 - 100m|
|Year of IBA assessment||2001|
Ornithological information This is probably the most important area in Yemen for the study of bird migration (see table for key species). The site is a major bottleneck for soaring, migratory birds, especially birds of prey, flying between Africa and their Eurasian breeding grounds, mainly Aquila nipalensis and Buteo buteo. This passage has been largely established by observations in Djibouti; there has been little opportunity to survey at Bab al-Mandab. From very limited observations it appears that the promontory and neighbouring areas, particularly the nearby vegetated wadis, are important stop-over points for passerine migrants and at least in spring there are good numbers of Cercotrichas galactotes, Sylvia nisoria, S. atricapilla, Phylloscopus trochilus, Oriolus oriolus and Cinnyricinclus leucogaster. Only one very brief count on a small part of Dhubab Flats has been carried out, and this showed the lagoon/saltflat system to be a good area for waders, notably Dromas ardeola, Limicola falcinellus and Tringa cinerea. A full survey of the whole complex would doubtless show the site to be one of the richest coastal wetlands in Yemen. Offshore there are major movements of seabirds (notably Oceanites oceanicus, skuas, gulls, Sterna bergii, and S. bengalensis) and of waders (notably Numenius phaeopus and Phalaropus lobatus).
Site description An area centred on the rocky promontory that juts into the Bab al-Mandab straits, towards Djibouti, at the south-west extremity of Yemen.
|Species||Season||Period||Population estimate||Quality of estimate||IBA Criteria||IUCN Category|
|Audubon's Shearwater Puffinus lherminieri||winter||1993||common individuals||poor||B1ii, B2||Least Concern|
|White-eyed Gull Larus leucophthalmus||breeding||1993||unknown [units unknown]||-||B2||Near Threatened|
|White-eyed Gull Larus leucophthalmus||passage||1993||45 individuals||poor||A1, B2||Near Threatened|
|Brown-necked Raven Corvus ruficollis||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Greater Hoopoe-lark Alaemon alaudipes||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Black-crowned Sparrow-lark Eremopterix nigriceps||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Arabian Babbler Turdoides squamiceps||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|Blackstart Cercomela melanura||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|House Bunting Emberiza striolata||resident||1993||present [units unknown]||-||A3||Least Concern|
|A4iv Species group - soaring birds/cranes||passage||1987||246,000 individuals||good||A4iv, B1iv|
|IUCN habitat||Habitat detail||Extent (% of site)|
|Land-use||Extent (% of site)|
Other biodiversity Mammals: Gazella sp. (globally threatened). Reptiles: Chelonia mydas (E) occurs offshore, and the beach 5 km east of Al-Suqayya may be a nesting locality; Eretmochelys imbricata (E) is reported to nest on Perim.
Management considerations Due to military security, the area has apparently been little visited or used, and it continues to receive this unintentional protection.
Conservation response No formal nature conservation measures are known to have been taken.
References Welch and Welch (1988).
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Recommended citation BirdLife International (2013) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bab al-Mandab - Mawza. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 20/06/2013
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