|IBA conservation status
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Site description (2001 baseline)
The Nyanga mountains form the northernmost extent of the Eastern Highlands in Zimbabwe. They lie about 70 km north-east of Mutare in two rural Districts, Nyanga and Mutasa. The mountains are a popular tourist destination, attracting large numbers of visitors. Nyanga National Park (440 km²) forms the core of this site and also part of an adjacent, contiguous IBA, Nyanga lowlands/Honde valley (IBA ZW002). The park is surrounded by privately owned commercial farms, forestry plantations, tea estates and communal lands.
See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. Because of its accessibility and popularity with tourists, the Nyanga avifauna is relatively well known and includes 246 species. With respect to the species of global conservation concern, Nyanga’s grasslands are an important breeding ground for Hirundo atrocaerulea. An unpublished field survey in Nyanga National Park estimated the population to be at least 400 birds. Since there are areas of suitable habitat outside the park, the total population could be at least 600 birds. Grus carunculatus (four pairs) breed in the national park and adjacent farms. Circus macrourus is an occasional visitor, and Falco fasciinucha, although seen rarely, may breed in the area. Nyanga is a breeding area for two restricted-range species, Apalis chirindensis and Prinia robertsi.
Non-bird biodiversity: The extensive grasslands contain many herbs and shrubs with restricted/localized distributions. There are five or six endemic plants and a further six species with very localized distributions: Aloe inyangensis, Moraea inyangani, Erica simii, Scadoxus pole-evansii, Aloe rhodesiana, Dierama inyangensis, Euphorbia citrina, E. crebifolia and Protea inyangensis. The unusual grassland species are linked to the northernmost limits of the Drakensberg flora. There are several endemic or restricted-range species of amphibian: Bufo gariepensis inyangae, Probreviceps rhodesianus, Arthroleptis xenodactyliodes, Leptopelis flavomaculatus, Afrixalus fornasinii and Hyperolius tuberilinguis. The snake Bitis atropos occurs in the montane grasslands.
BirdLife International (2024) Important Bird Area factsheet: Nyanga mountains. Downloaded from https://datazone.birdlife.org/site/factsheet/nyanga-mountains-iba-zimbabwe on 21/02/2024.