Site description (2001 baseline)
This site extends from the montane forests on the slopes of Nyangani mountain down to the lowland rainforests (below 1,000 m) in the Honde valley. It is contiguous with the eastern boundary of the Nyanga mountains (IBA ZW001) and has been split from that site on the basis of its warmer and more tropical environment, with consequently different vegetation and avifauna. The site is bounded in the east and south by the Holdenby Communal Land, part of Mutasa District and two large tea-estates. It is important to note that these two Nyanga IBAs (ZW001 and ZW002) encompass an extensive chain of rainforest spanning 1,000 m of elevation. Forest birds are thus protected in both their high-altitude summer habitat and their lower-altitude winter grounds.
See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. There are small patches of grassland at 1,600 m, interspersed among the forests, which contain Hirundo atrocaerulea. This species occurs regularly in the upper Kairezi river valley within the national park. Other species of interest in these forests are Smithornis capensis, Cercococcyx montanus, Cuculus poliocephalus, Bias musicus, Indicator meliphilus, Pitta angolensis, Apaloderma narina and Gypohierax angolensis. There is an unsubstantiated report of Telophorus zeylonus.
Non-bird biodiversity: There are two Specially Protected Plants that occur in this IBA: a cycad Encephalartos manikensis (Rare) and a staghorn fern Platycerium alcicorne. Rare species of orchid are known in the forests and are threatened by felling of the trees and by plant collectors.
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Nyanga lowlands/Honde valley. Downloaded from http://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/nyanga-lowlands-honde-valley-iba-zimbabwe on 07/12/2023.