The majority of the Catadupa IBA is highly karstified (white limestone formation), with good secondary forest, and areas of distur-bance with bamboo and cultivation. The IBA includes the Lacovia Mountains on the south. Several rivers flow through (particularly the Great River) which give rise to small pockets of alluvium. The mountain range is steep in places and its vegetation includes Disturbed Broadleaf (secondary) forest. Agriculture & small rural settlements occur in the less steep areas and alongside rivers. Rainfall in the area is in the range 200 -380 cm per annum (Mor-rissey, 1983)
This IBA is important for the range of endem-ics bird species (25) including the vulnerable Ring-tailed Pigeon, Black-billed and Yellow-billed Parrots; and the near-threatened Crested Quail-dove and Blue Mountain Vireo, as well as the Plain Pigeon. Due to the rela-tively undisturbed nature of some sections the IBA probably attracts a wide range of winter migrants.
Non-bird biodiversity: In 2003 Matthew S. Lehnert undertook a study of Papilio homerus in the Eldersley (southeastern) area of the IBA where a small population was located. This emphasizes the need for retention of connectivity between Catadupa and the Cockpit Country where other populations augment the number of indi-viduals. Caves in the IBA are documented in Fincham 1997 (2d ed.) maps 4 & 5. Snails abound in the area, and a recently recognized full species Pleurodonte catadupae “is found only in St. James on the western side of the Cockpit Country.” (Rosenberg & Muratov. 2005)
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
This IBA is particularly important as it em-braces three watersheds (Great River, Martha Brae and Black River) and provides connec-tivity with the main Cockpit Country IBA. In-cluded in the IBA are the following Forest Re-serves: Ffyffe and Rankine, Mocho (a number of blocks) and Garlands (2 blocks), as well as Croydon Plantation, a private property which has been accorded Reserve status by the For-estry Department. Historically the site is impor-tant as the birthplace of Sam Sharpe who pro-posed a stop-work strike in 1831, instead, the last slave uprising took place, and slavery was abolished in 1834. The railway station at the town of Catadupa has been declared a Na-tional Heritage Site by the Jamaica National Heritage Trust.
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Catadupa. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 25/11/2020.