The eastern slope of the Jibal al-Nusayriyah range is a very steep scarp, lining the western edge of the Al-Ghab basin. A 1977 map based on surveys in the 1940s suggests that c.20,000 ha of woodland existed along the scarp at that time. The current extent of woodland is unknown but is still likely to be sizeable, since the steep slopes have presumably inhibited clearance for agriculture or other uses. The woodland is dominated by Abies cilicica, with Carpinus orientalis and Ostrya carpinifolia.
There is no specific information available to BirdLife International, but the breeding bird community is likely to be very similar to Jabal Slenfeh (see site 011), and large numbers of migrating raptors of similar species to Jabal Slenfeh may pass down this scarp in autumn, arriving from the north-east from the Caucasus Mountains (Macfarlane 1978). As such, this forest site is likely to be very important as a rare example of a threatened and diminishing habitat in the Levant.
Non-bird biodiversity: No information available to BirdLife International.
Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Hunting is a widespread activity in the Jibal al-Nusayriyah range. Shooting of migratory raptors is common in Syria (Baumgart 1991a, 1991b, Bijlsma 1987).
Data-sheet compiled by Dr Ibrahim Hanna and Dr Amer Majid Agha.