Umm al-Qamari

Year of compilation: 1994

Site description
Two small, flat, fossil-coral islands in the Red Sea (12 ha and 2.7 ha), south-west of Qunfudah town. Rainfall is light and erratic, but there is often a heavy dew and the islands are exceedingly well vegetated, with thickets up to 3 m tall of Salvadora and Suaeda; on more open ground there is Cyperus, Atriplex and Zygophyllum.

Key biodiversity
See box for key species. Other breeding birds include Butorides striatus (2 pairs), Egretta gularis (7 pairs), Pandion haliaetus (2 pairs) and Streptopelia roseogrisea (c.500 pairs). Small numbers of Pelecanus rufescens roost on the beaches in winter.

Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
The islands have long been protected by traditional hunting laws, and are now also formally protected by NCWCD. It is not known whether hunting and egg-collecting occur, nor whether there is disturbance by other visitors.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Umm al-Qamari. Downloaded from on 26/10/2020.