Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary

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Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary
IUCN category II (national park)
CormoransDjoudj.JPG
Map showing the location of Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary
Map showing the location of Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary
Location Senegal
Coordinates 16°30′00″N 16°10′00″W / 16.50000°N 16.16667°W / 16.50000; -16.16667Coordinates: 16°30′00″N 16°10′00″W / 16.50000°N 16.16667°W / 16.50000; -16.16667
Area 160 km²
Established April 14, 1971
Type: Natural
Criteria: vii, x
Designated: 1981 (5th session)
Reference No. 25
State Party:  Senegal
Region: Africa
Endangered: 1984–1988;
2000–-2006

The Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary (French: Parc national des oiseaux du Djoudj) lies on the southeast bank of the Senegal River in Senegal, in northern Biffeche, north east of St-Louis.

It provides a range of wetland habitats which prove very popular with migrating birds, many of which have just crossed the Sahara. Of almost 400 species of birds, the most visible are pelicans and flamingos. Less conspicuous are the Aquatic Warblers migrating here from Europe; for these, the park is the single most important wintering site yet discovered [1]. A wide range of wildlife also inhabits the park, which is designated a World Heritage Site. The site was added to the list of World Heritage in Danger in 2000 due to the introduction of the invasive giant salvinia plant, which threatens to choke out the park's native vegetation. However it was removed from the list in 2006.

Environmental issues[edit]

At left, the drought of September 1979; at right, the floods of November 1999

Since operation of the Diama Dam on the Senegal River began in 1988, experts have observed a lowering of the water level, desalinization, and silting. The changes pose a threat to the fauna and flora. There has been in particular a proliferation of typhas and phragmites. To the left, satellite photos take by NASA in 1979 (before construction of the dam) and 1999 (afterwards) give evidence of the significant impact on the region's ecosystem.

In 2006, though no cases of avian flu had been reported in Senegal, a monitoring program was put into effect.

References[edit]

Pelicans on an island in the park
Pier and warthogs