Site description (2001 baseline)
The smallest National Park in Angola, situated between the Cuije river to the north, and two unnamed tributaries of the Cuanza river to the east and west. There are two towns, Culamagia and Techongolola on the eastern edge and southern tip of the park respectively. The topography is flat or gently undulating. The vegetation is mainly woodland, dominated by Brachystegia and Julbernardia, together with other trees in places (Piliostigma, Burkea, Monotes, Strychnos, Sterculia and Dombeya). Poorly developed gallery forest occurs along some of the perennial streams and rivers. There are thickets on termitaria, and drainage lines of open grassland, indicating seasonally waterlogged soils. Scattered trees (Uapaca, Piliostigma, Annona, Entadopsis and Erythrina) occur in the ecotone between grassland and woodland. Fairly extensive swamps of Cyperus papyrus are present in permanently wet patches along the drainage lines.
See Box and Table 3 for key species. The more structured woodlands and the dense undergrowth in parts of the woodland at Cangandala National Park (as well as the lower altitude), compared to miombo woodlands on the plateau, makes the habitat generally unsuitable for typical ground-foraging miombo bird species (Benson and Irwin 1966; Dean 1988). Nevertheless, the park generally has a fairly rich avifauna, and 170 species were recorded during two weeks of fieldwork in August–September. A number of breeding records were also collected during this period (e.g. Francolinus finschii) (Dean 1974). Two species of the Guinea–Congo Forests biome occur at the site.
Non-bird biodiversity: Large herbivores present in the park include Hippotragus niger variani (CR) (Huntley 1974a).
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Cangandala National Park. Downloaded from https://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/cangandala-national-park-iba-angola on 22/02/2024.