Northern Arava valley

Year of compilation: 1994

Site description
The area along the Rift Valley south of the Dead Sea from the Ne'ot Hakikar Nature Reserve (10 km south of Sedom, 645 ha) south to the Hazeva and Shezaf Nature Reserve (34 km south of Sedom, 1,400 ha). A flat desert area with saltflats (in the north) and low hills, dissected by wide wadis. Vegetation comprises scattered open woodland of Acacia raddiana and A. tortilis in the wadis, and scrub of Tamarix, Prosopis, Atriplex halimus, Suaeda monoecia and Alhagi maurorum. There is a little agriculture.

Key biodiversity
Large numbers of storks, raptors and Grus grus occur on passage, especially in the northern part of the site.

Non-bird biodiversity: Mammals: Pipistrellus bodenheimeri (rare endemic), Canis lupus (V), Felis margarita (rare), Caracal caracal (rare), Panthera pardus (rare), Gazella gazella (V) and G. dorcas (V). Reptiles: Varanus griseus (rare) and Uromastyx aegyptius (rare). Flora: Isatis microcarpa, Convolvulus fatmensis and Hippocrepis constricta.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Two established Nature Reserves account for 2,045 ha of the site. Parts of the area are threatened by conversion to agriculture and saltpans, and the desert crust has recently become subject to damage by all-terrain vehicles.

Data-sheet compiled by S. Blitzblau, reviewed by R. Frumkin.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Northern Arava valley. Downloaded from on 24/03/2023.