Important Bird Areas

Find out more about the bird habitats in North Cyprus

Karpasia Peninsula - Kleides Islands


Location: Cyprus, Famagusta District
Central coordinates: 34o 25.50' East 35o 36.72' North
IBA criteria: A1, A2, A3, B2, B3, C1, C6
Area: 58,861 ha
Altitude: 0 - 215m
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

The remote, relatively un-spoilt and picturesque Karpasia Peninsula, with its rolling hills, juniper-dominated shrubland and low-intensity farmland is one of the outstanding IBAs in Cyprus important for its characteristic Mediterranean bird community. The site is also Endemic Bird Area, and is significant for no fewer than four species of global conservation concern like the Roller and the Audouin’s Gull. The rocky Kleides islands and the islet of Lefkoniso are the only breeding sites in Cyprus for this gull species.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Chukar
Alectoris chukar
breeding 2005-2011 1,500-3,000 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Black Francolin
Francolinus francolinus
breeding 2005-2011 250-999 breeding pairs poor B2 Least Concern
European Shag
Phalacrocorax aristotelis
breeding 2005-2011 5-25 breeding pairs good C6 Least Concern
Red-footed Falcon
Falco vespertinus
passage 2005-2011 50-500 individuals medium A1, C1 Near Threatened
Pallid Harrier
Circus macrourus
passage 2005-2011 20-60 individuals poor A1, C1 Near Threatened
Stone Curlew
Burhinus oedicnemus
breeding 2005-2011 <50 breeding pairs medium B2, C6 Not Recognised
Audouin's Gull
Larus audouinii
breeding 2005-2011 15-28 breeding pairs good A1, C1, C6 Near Threatened
Eurasian Scops-owl
Otus scops
breeding 2005-2011 300-600 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Little Owl
Athene
breeding 2005-2011 300-400 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
European Roller
Coracias garrulus
breeding 2005-2011 30-120 breeding pairs medium A1, B2, C1, C6 Near Threatened
European Roller
Coracias garrulus
passage 2005-2011 250-1,000 individuals medium A1, C1 Near Threatened
Masked Shrike
Lanius nubicus
breeding 2005-2011 30-60 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Crested Lark
Galerida cristata
breeding 2005-2011 2,000-4,000 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Spectacled Warbler
Sylvia conspicillata
breeding 2005-2011 500-1,000 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Sardinian Warbler
Sylvia melanocephala
breeding 2005-2011 4,000-8,000 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Cyprus Warbler
Sylvia melanothorax
breeding 2005-2011 10,000-15,000 breeding pairs medium A2, A3, B3, C6 Least Concern
Cyprus Wheatear
Oenanthe cypriaca
breeding 2005-2011 1,500-2,500 breeding pairs medium A2, A3, B3 Least Concern
Black-headed Bunting
Emberiza melanocephala
breeding 2005-2011 400-900 breeding pairs medium A3, B2 Least Concern
Cretzschmar's Bunting
Emberiza caesia
breeding 2005-2011 40-60 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Coastline Sand dunes & beaches minor
Grassland minor
Shrubland Sclerophyllous scrub, garrigue and maquis 10%
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas; Perennial crops, orchards and groves 9%
Forest Native coniferous woodland 4%
Sea Open Sea; Sea inlets and coastal features 76%
Rocky areas minor

Pentadaktylos Mountains


Location: Cyprus, Famagusta District,Kyrenia District,Nicosia District
Central coordinates: 33o 32.00' East 35o 19.48' North
IBA criteria: A1, A2, A3, B2, B3, C1, C2, C6
Area: 26,376 ha
Altitude: 50 - 1,024m
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

This site encompasses most of the Pentadaktylos range, which stretches along the north coast of the island. The steep slopes of the range are sparsely vegetated on the southern face but covered in scrub and mixed forest of pine and cypress on the wetter north-facing slopes. The site is of importance for many breeding forest birds including the Black-headed Bunting and the Bonelli’s Eagle and for its characteristic Mediterranean bird community. It is an Endemic Bird Area site, with significant populations of the endemic Cyprus Wheatear and Cyprus Warbler.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Chukar
Alectoris chukar
breeding 2005-2011 2,000-8,000 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Peregrine Falcon
Falco peregrinus
breeding 2005-2011 5-7 breeding pairs good C6 Not Recognised
Bonelli's Eagle
Aquila fasciata
breeding 2005-2011 10-12 breeding pairs good B2, C2, C6 Least Concern
Eurasian Scops-owl
Otus scops
breeding 2005-2011 300-700 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Little Owl
Athene noctua
breeding 2005-2011 400-700 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
European Roller
Coracias garrulus
breeding 2005-2011 20-80 breeding pairs medium A1, C1 Near Threatened
Masked Shrike
Lanius nubicus
breeding 2005-2011 400-1,200 breeding pairs medium A3, B2, C6 Least Concern
Spectacled Warbler
Sylvia conspicillata
breeding 2005-2011 1,000-2,000 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Sardinian Warbler
Sylvia melanocephala
breeding 2005-2011 1,000-4,000 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Cyprus Warbler
Sylvia melanothorax
breeding 2005-2011 10,000-15,000 breeding pairs medium A2, A3, B3, C6 Least Concern
Cyprus Wheatear
Oenanthe cypriaca
breeding 2005-2011 2,500-5,000 breeding pairs medium A2, A3, B3, C6 Least Concern
Black-headed Bunting
Emberiza melanocephala
breeding 2005-2011 200-300 breeding pairs poor A3 Least Concern
Cretzschmar's Bunting
Emberiza caesia
breeding 2005-2011 500-1,000 breeding pairs medium A3, B3, C6 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Forest Mixed woodland; Native coniferous woodland 40%
Shrubland Sclerophyllous scrub, garrigue and maquis; Scrub 50%
Grassland minor
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas; Perennial crops, orchards and groves 9%
Other minor

Kormakitis Peninsula


Location: Cyprus, Kyrenia District,Nicosia District
Central coordinates: 32o 59.28' East 35o 20.54' North
IBA criteria: B1i, B2, B3, C2, C6
Area: 9,789 ha
Altitude:
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

On the north-western part of the island, Kormakitis Peninsula with its rocky coastline, extensive areas of low scrub, patches of lowland pine forest and low-intensity cereal-growing land, is of importance for passing waterbirds along its coastline and for breeding birds, like the Nightjar and the two endemics.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Chukar
Alectoris chukar
breeding 2005-2011 1,000-1,500 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Black Francolin
Francolinus francolinus
breeding 2005-2011 50-249 breeding pairs poor B2 Least Concern
Little Egret
Egretta garzetta
passage 2005-2011 400-800 individuals medium B1i, C2 Not Recognised
European Nightjar
Caprimulgus europaeus
breeding 2005-2011 50-150 breeding pairs medium C6 Least Concern
Crested Lark
Galerida cristata
breeding 2005-2011 2,000-3,000 breeding pairs medium B2 Least Concern
Cyprus Warbler
Sylvia melanothorax
breeding 2005-2011 1,000-2,000 breeding pairs medium B3 Least Concern
Cyprus Wheatear
Oenanthe cypriaca
breeding 2005-2011 500-1,500 breeding pairs medium B3 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas 39%
Forest Native coniferous woodland 17%
Grassland 1%
Shrubland Sclerophyllous scrub, garrigue and maquis; Scrub 39%
Coastline Sand dunes & beaches 3%
Other minor
Rocky areas minor

Famagusta Lakes


Location: Cyprus, Famagusta District
Central coordinates: 33o 54.54' East 35o 8.35' North
IBA criteria: B2, C6
Area: 448 ha
Altitude: 0 - 10m
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

An extensive, though fragmented, complex of fresh and brackish marshes and pools on the outskirts of Famagusta town. Τhe site attracts a wide range of waterbirds, notably breeding Black-winged Stilt and Spur-winged Lapwing. The lakes are also the only known breeding site for Glossy Ibis in Cyprus.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black Francolin
Francolinus francolinus
breeding 2005-2011 50-249 breeding pairs poor B2 Least Concern
Glossy Ibis
Plegadis falcinellus
breeding 2005-2011 10-20 breeding pairs good C6 Least Concern
Black-winged Stilt
Himantopus himantopus
breeding 2005-2011 2-10 breeding pairs poor C6 Not Recognised
Spur-winged Lapwing
Vanellus spinosus
breeding 2005-2011 2-10 breeding pairs medium B2, C6 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas 12%
Shrubland Sclerophyllous scrub, garrigue and maquis 1%
Coastline Sand dunes & beaches 26%
Other 2%
Wetlands (inland) 59%

Mesaoria Plain


Location: Cyprus, Famagusta District, Nicosia District
Central coordinates: 33o 45.75' East 35o 7.88' North
IBA criteria: B2, C6
Area: 18,217 ha
Altitude: 5 - 60m
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

This extensive site captures an important part of the central Mesaoria plain and is almost entirely dominated by cereal fields. Though more intensively managed and man-dominated than most other IBAs, it is the top breeding site on the island for three species typical of open, flat and dry landscapes: Stone Curlew, Crested Lark and Calandra Lark.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black Francolin
Francolinus francolinus
breeding 2005-2011 250-999 breeding pairs poor B2 Least Concern
Stone Curlew
Burhinus oedicnemus
breeding 2005-2011 50-249 breeding pairs poor B2, C6 Not Recognised
Calandra Lark
Melanocorypha calandra
breeding 2005-2011 250-999 breeding pairs poor C6 Least Concern
Crested Lark
Galerida cristata
breeding 2005-2011 2,500-9,999 breeding pairs poor B2 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas; Perennial crops, orchards and groves 99%
Grassland Minor

Mia Milia Sewage Treatment Plant


Location: Cyprus, Nicosia District
Central coordinates: 33o 27.37' East 35o 11.64' North
IBA criteria: A1, B2, C1, C6
Area: 592 ha
Altitude: 85 - 100m
Year of IBA assessment: 2012

Summary:

A man-made set of sewage treatment pools and surrounding agricultural land on the outskirts of Nicosia. The site attracts breeding waders and has regularly attracted small but significant numbers of the globally threatened White-headed Duck in winter.


Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
White-headed Duck
Oxyura leucocephala
winter 2005-2011 1-2 individuals good A1, C1 Endangered
Black-winged Stilt
Himantopus himantopus
breeding 2005-2011 1-30 breeding pairs medium C6 Not Recognised
Spur-winged Lapwing
Vanellus spinosus
breeding 2005-2011 2-13 breeding pairs medium B2, C6 Least Concern
Calandra Lark
Melanocorypha calandra
breeding 2005-2011 < 50 breeding pairs poor C6 Least Concern

Habitats

IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Artificial - terrestrial Arable land; Other urban and industrial areas 100%
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