Arusha National Park and vicinity

Country/territory: Tanzania

IBA criteria met: A1, A2, A3, A4i, A4iii (2001)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 42,000 ha

Nature Tanzania
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) State (condition) Pressure (threat) Response (action)
2009 unfavourable very high high
For more information about IBA monitoring, please click here

Site description (2001 baseline)
Arusha National Park covers the eastern portion of Mount Meru and extends 16 km to the east of the mountain. The site lies to the east of the Rift Valley and to the west of Mount Kilimanjaro (TZ003). The park encompasses a wide variety of habitats including montane forest similar to that on Mount Kilimanjaro, characterized by Diospyros abyssinica, Olea welwitschii, O. hochstetteri and O. africana, and several freshwater and alkaline lakes, ponds and swamps. The IBA also includes lower and mid-altitude forest lying outside the park in Forest Reserves.

Key biodiversity
See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. The site is known to support at least 411 species, including Ardeola idae, as a non-breeding visitor in small numbers, and one species of the Serengeti plains EBA, as well as 11 species of the Somali–Masai biome (see Tables 2 and 3). The National Park is the only protected area utilized by the dwindling East African population of Oxyura maccoa which winters on the large alkaline lakes and breeds in the small, secluded freshwater ponds and swamps. The mountain streams hold Anas sparsa and the towering cliffs support a large population of Apus niansae and two pairs of Gypaetus barbatus. Apus horus and Merops bullockoides share nest-sites along the riverbanks, while the swamp on the floor of Ngurdoto Crater provides a safe nest-site for Ephippiorhynchus senegalensis. There are important populations of montane forest birds in the natural forest including Poicephalus gulielmi, Apaloderma vittatum and Linurgus olivaceus.

Non-bird biodiversity: A population of Loxodonta africana (EN) occurs in the park, while Lycaon pictus (EN) is an occasional visitor. The commonest duiker in the forest is Cephalophus harveyi (LR/cd).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Arusha National Park and vicinity. Downloaded from on 23/02/2024.