Jbel Krouz is a rugged Saharan limestone massif, around 90 km long and 12 km wide, located to the west of the town of Figuig near the Algerian border. Vegetation consists of arid steppe of tussock-grass Stipa tenacissima at lower altitudes and degraded Juniperus phoenicea woodland on the mountain summits. Other common plant species include Artemisia inculta and Rosmarinus officinalis. The principal human activity is pastoralism.
See Box and Table 2 for key species. Approximately 60 species have been recorded, including 13 breeding species of the Sahara–Sindian biome, of which one, Caprimulgus aegyptius, occurs as a summer visitor. Up to four species of the Mediterranean North Africa biome may be present, but have not yet been confirmed. Chlamydotis undulata occurs in the steppe zone.
Non-bird biodiversity: Three threatened ungulates—Ammotragus lervia (VU), Gazella dorcas (LR/nt) and Gazella cuvieri (EN)—are reported from the site. The threatened tortoise Testudo graeca (VU) and the endemic Moroccan toad Bufo brongersmai also occur.
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
The site is currently unprotected, but is a priority 1 SIBE (No. 69). It is suffering from overgrazing and over-exploitation of woody species for fuelwood, together with over-hunting of game species. An integrated management plan incorporating ecotourism is required, and the site could potentially be considered for gazettement as a National or Natural Park.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Jbel Krouz. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 30/03/2023.