Patoku lagoon

Site description (2000 baseline):

Site location and context
The site includes two brackish, shallow, coastal lagoons, separated from the sea by two sandbars, with an outlet to the Adriatic Sea in the centre. At low tide several hectares of mudflats are exposed. The site includes the riparian Fushe-Kushe forest with Alnus glutinosa and Populus alba, extending for approximately 50 ha. Adjacent marshes have reedbeds with Juncus maritimus and Typha angustifolia. Until recent drainage the site encompassed 4,200 ha of wetland. The main land-uses are fishing, agriculture, grazing, hunting (the area is a Game Reserve) and tourism (along the sandbars).

Key biodiversity
The area is particularly important for migratory and wintering waders (c.4,000 waterbirds present each year), including the globally endangered Numenius tenuirostris. Formerly a colony of 20-30 pairs of Pelecanus crispus bred on Cabok island.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
The main threats are wetland drainage and human disturbance. Other threats include illegal activities such as dynamite fishing, wood-cutting inside the hunting reserve, and hunting at night.

Protected areas
National High International None1,211 ha of IBA covered by Game Reserve (1,211 ha).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Patoku lagoon. Downloaded from on 05/12/2023.