Bentael forest area

Country/territory: Lebanon

IBA Criteria met: B1iv (2008)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 150 ha

Protection status:

Society for the Protection of Nature in Lebanon
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2008 medium near favourable not assessed
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
The site is located in the northern half of Lebanon, in the hills to the east of the town of Jbail, north of Beirut. It is a steep sided valley, mostly covered with dense woodland, with a low level of agriculture and some grazing.

Key biodiversity
The Mediterranean woodland supports relatively few breeding species of bird and they are mostly ones that are common and widespread such as Blackbird, Great Tit and various finches. The more scrubby areas of the woodland support resident Sardinian Warblers, a biome restricted species. Species associated with the more open rocky areas included Black-eared Wheatear, Western Rock Nuthatch (both biome restricted species) and Chukar. Chukar are apparently resident at low densities, but the only record of Black-eared Wheatear, was of a single bird in March, which may have been on passage. Soaring bird migration was low in spring, with very small numbers of eagles passing over, and only medium sized flocks of Pelicans and Cranes being of any interest. Because of the war in Lebanon in the summer of 2006 and the evacuation of foreign staff, no visits were made during the autumn period and so it remains to be seen whether or not this site is an important one for the autumn migration of soaring birds.

Non-bird biodiversity: Evidence of Wild Boar (Sus scrofa) was seen during a winter visit but it was not possible to estimate the population size of this species.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Bentael forest area. Downloaded from on 29/11/2020.