The site lies c.360 km west of Accra, near the town of Axim. It includes the freshwater Amansuri lagoon (including the village of Nzulenso which is built on stilts in the lagoon), the flood-plains of the Amansuri river, the coastal Amansuri lagoon and estuary, and the sandy Esiama beach, between the Amansuri and Ankobra rivers. The site covers c.40% of the total catchment of the Amansuri river. The wetland is a blackwater system. The vegetation in the catchment is Wet Evergreen Forest, with swamp-forest in wetter parts. The most common tree in the swamps is the Raffia Palm Raphia vinifera, which grows in almost pure stands. The large spiny aroid Cyrtosperma senegalense grows along the edge of the raffia while the drier patches support mainly sedges and grasses. The area is subject to seasonal flooding and the nature of the terrain is such that access is very difficult and, as a consequence, large areas are largely untouched.
See Box for key species. The coastal areas of the Amansuri catchment, including the coastal lagoon, estuary and Esiama beach, support appreciable numbers of waterbirds. Other common species occurring at the site include Pluvialis squatarola, Charadrius hiaticula, Tringa hypoleucos and Arenaria interpres. Up to 30 Haematopus ostralegus are regularly seen on the beach, the only site along the Ghana coast where the species is seen with any degree of frequency. In addition to Sterna maxima, small flocks of S. sandvicensis, S. hirundo and Chlidonias niger also regularly roost on sandbanks in the estuary. Species occurring in the inland freshwater lagoon and swamp areas include gallinules, crakes and jacanas. The avifauna of the rest of the catchment has not been studied.
Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Amansuri wetland. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 18/01/2020.