Bakhma and Bradost Mountain

Country/territory: Iraq

IBA Criteria met: A1, A3 (2015)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 21,858 ha

Protection status:

Nature Iraq
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2014 very high not assessed negligible
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
This site includes Bradost Mountain and the Bakhma Area to the west. The latter, originally identified as an Important Bird Area (IBA004) by Evans (1994), is downstream of where the Greater Zab and Choman-Rawanduz Rivers meet and was the location of a dam that was partially constructed during the Saddam Regime The site is located in the Zagros range where the geology is limestone and soil types are clay and sandy clay.

Key biodiversity
Additional Important Bird Observations: During the surveys 75 species were observed. In addition to those listed in the table, European Roller Coracias garrulous and Eastern Cinereous Bunting Emberiza semenowi (both Near Threatened) were breeding. Five Irano-Turanian and four Mediterranean biome-restricted species were also found breeding. Other Important Fauna: Mammal data were collected in 2007 and 2010. Golden Jackal Canis aureus were observed. During an interview, survey with the forestry police on Bradost Mountain, the following additional species were reported: Wild Goats Capra aegagrus (Vulnerable), sometimes seen in flocks of 30 individuals down the mountain near the main road; Grey Wolf Canis lupus; Persian Squirrel Sciurus anomalus; Indian Crested Porcupine Hystrix indica; Syrian Brown Bear Ursus arctos syriacus, seen two weeks before the interview, but only present in low numbers; Striped Hyena Hyaena hyaena; and Wild Cat Felis silvestris, which are reported in plentiful numbers, as well as some more common species. No significant reptile observation was made. Fish: Data were collected in 2007 and 2008 from the Choman-Rawanduz River. Six significant species were found as defined by Coad (2010): Alburnus mossulensis, Cyprinion kais, Garra rufa, Glyptothorax kurdistanicus, and Luciobarbus xanthopterus and Silurus triostegus. Also Mastacembelus mastacembelus and Mystus pelusius were observed for whom the conservation status in Iraq is unknown. Additional Plant & Habitat Information: This site contains a good population of Pistacia eurycarpa, P. khunjuk and Crataegus azarolus, which are economically and culturally important plants. It also contains a vineyard of Vitis vinifera, which is important as a genetic resource.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bakhma and Bradost Mountain. Downloaded from on 07/07/2020.