Makkah waste-water stream

Country/territory: Saudi Arabia

IBA criteria met: A4i, B1i, B2 (1994)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 300 ha

IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) Threat (pressure) Condition (state) Action (response)
2013 low not assessed negligible
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Site description (baseline)
A stream of treated sewage effluent, flowing 20-30 km south-west from Makkah into the largely flat sandy desert of the Tihamah. The flow is rather erratic, being strongest for the first 12-15 km, after which satellite pools tend to be ephemeral. The water is often densely lined with Calotropis, Phragmites and grasses.

Key biodiversity
See box for key species. A wide range of ducks and waders uses the site in winter. Other migrants include small numbers of Grus grus and G. virgo. Pterocles lichtensteinii and P. exustus can be very common in the area.

Non-bird biodiversity: See Gasperetti (1989).

Data-sheet compiled by Dr Stephen F. Newton, with comments by P. Symens.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Makkah waste-water stream. Downloaded from on 05/06/2023.