São Tomé montane and cloud-forests

Country/territory: São Tomé e Príncipe

IBA Criteria met: A1, A2 (2001)
For more information about IBA criteria please click here

Area: 6,000 ha

Protection status:

Site description
The site comprises the highest parts of the island and includes three peaks, Pico de São Tomé (2,024 m), Calvario (1,594 m) and Pico Ana Chaves (1,630 m), as well as Lagoa Amelia, an old crater-lake and the surrounding marshy area. The area holds most of the montane and cloud-forests in the centre of the island above 1,000 m, around the Pico de São Tomé massif. The area that held montane forest between 800 m and 1,000 m on the northern edge of the massif is excluded, as it has been cleared for cultivation. Montane forests extend to 1,400 m, above which they give way to cloud-forest. Typical tree species of both forest-types include Tabernaemontana stenosiphon, Homalium henriquesii, Croton stelluliferus, Polyscias quintasii, Craterispermum montanum, Podocarpus mannii, all of which are endemic to the Gulf of Guinea islands, and the more widespread Olea capensis, Syzygium guineense and Pauridiantha floribunda.

Key biodiversity
See Box and Table 2 for key species. Among the 21 species recorded, six are of global conservation concern. The majority of the population of Columba thomensis occurs here. Otus hartlaubi and Oriolus crassirostris appear not to be found above 1,600 m, as do some of the restricted-range species such as Treron sanctithomae, Columba malherbii, Terpsiphone atrochalybeia and Ploceus grandis, which are therefore not found in the Pico de São Tomé area.

Non-bird biodiversity: None known to BirdLife International.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Important Bird Areas factsheet: São Tomé montane and cloud-forests. Downloaded from on 28/09/2020.