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Location Belarus, Brest
Central coordinates 25o 18.00' East  52o 24.00' North
IBA criteria A1, B2, B3
Area 20,169 ha
Altitude 142 - 146m
Year of IBA assessment 2005

Akhova Ptushak Belarusi

Site description The site is Europe's largest complex of natural floodplain fen mires. The significant size of the area contributes to the relative stability of its ecosystems, which, to a large degree, are independent of outside impacts.

Key Biodiversity Sporovo fen mire is a key habitat for the globally threatened Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola, supporting 9% of the global population. It supports 20 more bird species listed in the National Red Data Book, including two disappearing ones, Corncrake Crex crex and Great Snipe Gallinago media, as well as an internationally important population of Bittern Botaurus stellaris and nationally important breeding populations of Black Stork Ciconia nigra. The site hosts a total of 123 bird species.

Non-bird biodiversity: The floodplain of the Yaselda river has a unique but not very diverse flora. High flora diversity is only observed on mineral islands; these, however, are few and in most cases transformed by people. 18 protected and 13 regionally important plant species occur. One of the unique Atlantic communities, Corynephoretum canescentis, is found here.Rare Red Data Book fauna includes one reptile species (Fresh-water Turtle Emys orbicularis) and 18 insect species (two of which are listed in the European Red Data Book).

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Corncrake Crex crex breeding  1996  30-50 breeding pairs  poor  A1  Least Concern 
Great Snipe Gallinago media breeding  2001  50-70 breeding pairs  medium  A1  Near Threatened 
Black Tern Chlidonias niger breeding  1999  100-200 breeding pairs  good  B2  Least Concern 
Aquatic Warbler Acrocephalus paludicola breeding  1996-2002  570-2,400 breeding pairs  good  A1  Vulnerable 
Savi's Warbler Locustella luscinioides breeding  1999  100-150 breeding pairs  good  B3  Least Concern 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Sporovskiy Nature Sanctuary or Partial Reserve 11,300 is identical to site 19,384  
Sporovsky Biological Reserve (zakaznik) Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 19,384 is identical to site 19,384  


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Wetlands (inland) Fens, transition mires and springs; Rivers and streams; Standing freshwater; Water fringe vegetation  75%
Forest Alluvial and very wet forest; Broadleaved deciduous woodland; Native coniferous woodland  10%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land  4%
Grassland Humid grasslands  5%

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture 15%
Notes: hay-making and cattle pasturing
not utilised 80%
forestry 5%
fisheries/aquaculture minor
hunting minor

Protection status National Conservation Status: A national biological zakaznik "Sporovski" in its contemporary borders was established in 1999. International Conservation Status: An IBA was established in 1998 (code BY 002-003, criteria A1, Â2, Â3).Sporovo is the first Ramsar site for Belarus, established in 1999 (criteria 1, 2).

References A.Kozulin, L.Vergeichik, M.Nikiforov and others. Treasures of Belarusian nature.- Minsk, 2002. -160 p.

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Sporaŭskaje balota. Downloaded from on 27/10/2016

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