Khirbat al Samra (sewage works)

Country/territory: Jordan

IBA Criteria met: A4i, B1i, B1iv, B2 (2000)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 500 ha

Protection status:

Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature
Most recent IBA monitoring assessment
Year of assessment Threat score (pressure) Condition score (state) Action score (response)
2013 high not assessed medium
For more information about IBA monitoring please click here

Site description
A large area of open, man-made pools in a broad depression close to Wadi Dhulayl (a tributary of the Zarqa river), surrounded by rather bare limestone desert. Amman's main sewage works; pools range from sludge to 'fresh' water, with rocky shores. There is very little natural vegetation. The water is used to irrigate olive groves.

Key biodiversity
See box for key species. A man-made wetland, but extremely attractive to migrant birds in autumn as the only permanent waterbody in a vast surrounding area, now that Azraq oasis is all but dry. The site’s main importance is in the large number of Ciconia ciconia which regularly rest and roost during autumn passage (see box). Breeding species include Himantopus himantopus (possibly), Vanellus spinosus (min. 14 pairs), Sylvia conspicillata, and possibly Charadrius dubius, Charadrius alexandrinus, Motacilla citreola and Rhodopechys obsoleta. Other passage migrants include Anas querquedula (230, September), Calidris minuta (500, August), Tringa ochropus (110, July), Chlidonias leucopterus (150, August) and Emberiza caesia.

Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Khirbat al Samra (sewage works). Downloaded from on 28/11/2020.