Myvatn - Laxa

IBA Criteria

Year of most recent IBA criteria assessment: 2000

Populations of IBA trigger species
Species Current IUCN Red List Category Season Year(s) of estimate Population estimate IBA Criteria Triggered
Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus LC non-breeding - 500-700 individuals A4i, B1i
Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus LC winter 1976-1986 223-276 individuals B1i, B3
Barrow's Goldeneye Bucephala islandica LC breeding 1975-1989 1,110 individuals B2
Goosander Mergus merganser LC winter 1976-1986 99 individuals B1i
Harlequin Duck Histrionicus histrionicus LC breeding 1975-1989 222 individuals A4i, B1i, B2
Greater Scaup Aythya marila LC breeding 1975-1989 3,275 individuals B1i
Horned Grebe Podiceps auritus VU breeding 1990 140 breeding pairs A4i, B1i
A4iii Species group - waterbirds n/a unknown - 20,000 individuals A4iii

Note: This table presents the IBA criteria triggered and the species that triggered then at the time of assessment, the current IUCN Red List category may vary from that which was in place at that time.

For more information about the IBA assessment process and criteria please click here

IBA Monitoring

Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2015 medium not assessed medium
Was the whole site covered? Yes State assessed by unset
Accuracy of information medium

Threats to the site (pressure)
Threat Level 1 Threat Level 2 Timing Scope Severity Result
Energy production and mining renewable energy likely in long term (beyond 4 years) majority/most of area/population (50-90%) moderate to rapid deterioration medium

Conservation actions taken at site (response)
Conservation Designation Management Planning Conservation Action Result
Whole area of site (>90%) covered by appropriate conservation designation A management plan exists but it is out of date or not comprehensive Some limited conservation initiatives are in place medium
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

IBA Protection

Protected Area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)
Skutustadargigar Natturuvaetti Monument 34 protected area contained by site 0
Seljahjallagil Natturuvaetti Monument 1,881 protected area overlaps with site 0
Myvatn-Laxá region Ramsar Site, Wetland of International Importance 20,000 protected area overlaps with site 10,200
Mÿvatn-Laxá Conservation Area 440,000 protected area contains site 10,200
Myvatn Serlog 15,289 protected area overlaps with site 0
Hverfjall (Hverfell) Natturuvaetti Monument 313 protected area overlaps with site 0
Dimmuborgir Natturuvaetti Monument 424 protected area contained by site 0


IUCN Habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Shrubland Scrub, Heathland -
Grassland -
Wetlands (inland) Standing freshwater, Rivers and streams, Water fringe vegetation, Fens, transition mires and springs -
Coastline -
For further information about the habitat classification please click here.

Land use

Land-use Extent (% of site)
agriculture -
tourism/recreation -
urban/industrial/transport -
nature conservation and research -
For further information about the land use classification please click here.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Myvatn - Laxa. Downloaded from on 29/03/2023.