This site, a mountainous massif, is located about 60 km south of Ambanja. Steep slopes (25–55°) cover about half of its area. Valleys are narrow and littered with large boulders. The headwaters of the Manongarivo river, and of tributaries of the Sambirano, Djangoa and Ambahatra rivers, all lie within the reserve, which functions as a hydrological reservoir for the surrounding area. The vegetation is composed of low- and mid-altitude dense humid forest. Low-altitude 127>dry-transitional forest covers 18% of the reserve, and is dominated by trees of Canarium, Symphonia (and other species of Guttiferae), Terminalia, Ravensara and species of Sapotaceae, with smaller trees such as Phyllarthron in the subcanopy. The understorey is dominated by large lianas (e.g. Landolphia spp.) and palms (e.g. Dypsis). Mid- and higher-altitude forest covers 28% of the site, extending to the summit of the mountain at 1,876 m; epiphytes are common (Rhipsalis, Platycerium, Drymaria, Asplenium, Bulbophyllum, Angraecum) and there are also rare trees such as Calliandra kony and Takhtajania perrieri.
See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. Sixty species are known from the site, of which 30 are endemic to Madagascar. However, knowledge of the bird fauna is incomplete and recent inventories are likely to increase these figures. Philepitta schlegeli and Falculea palliata, species characteristic of the West Malagasy biome, are present at low altitudes at the site. Species of global conservation concern include Lophotibis cristata.
The main threat to the site is slash-and-burn cultivation. The forest is also illegally exploited for firewood and construction wood, and this is altering the hydrology of the region. At least 75 plant species in the reserve are used medicinally by local people. Lemurs, carnivores and tenrecs are hunted, and cattle-grazing is increasing within the reserve.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Manongarivo Special Reserve and extension. Downloaded from
http://www.birdlife.org on 25/03/2023.