Kasanka National Park

Country/territory: Zambia

IBA criteria met: A1, A3 (2001)
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Area: 39,000 ha

BirdWatch Zambia
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) State (condition) Pressure (threat) Response (action)
2010 favourable low high
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Site description (2001 baseline)
Run by the Kasanka Trust, this was the first National Park to be privately managed and is entirely reliant on independent funding. It is situated to the west of the Serenje–Samfya road. Miombo dominates the area, but amongst the broad range of other habitats are an unusually high number of lakes (pans), some Cyperus papyrus swamp, dambo, mushitu, riparian forest and a few patches of dry evergreen forest. There are good tourist facilities and the park’s attractions include a tree-hide for viewing sitatunga Tragelaphus spekii which has been built 18 m up in a large mululu tree Khaya nyasica.

Key biodiversity
See Box and Table 3 for key species. Besides the large number of Zambezian biome endemics, the miombo avifauna includes species such as Pachycoccyx audeberti, Anthus caffer and Elminia albicauda, and both Stactolaema anchietae and S. whytii occur. Along the rivers Scotopelia peli, Podica senegalensis and Alcedo semitorquata are regular, and Circaetus cinerascens, Musophaga rossae, Merops boehmi and Nectarinia verticalis are regular in and around most forest. A wide variety of waterbirds are found. Grus carunculatus is resident, Egretta vinaceigula and Balaeniceps rex are rare visitors, Circus macrourus occurs in small numbers and Falco naumanni is probably regular on passage.

Non-bird biodiversity: A wide variety of mammals occur, including Tragelaphus spekii (LR/nt) and Cephalophus silvicultor (LR/nt). There is an enormous seasonal influx of the migratory fruit bat Eidolon helvum. Reptiles include the most southerly known population of Crocodylus cataphractus (DD).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Kasanka National Park. Downloaded from on 27/02/2024.