Tsimanampetsotsa National Park

Country/territory: Madagascar

IBA criteria met: A1, A2, A3, A4i (1999)
For more information about IBA criteria, please click here

Area: 43,000 ha

Asity Madagascar
IBA conservation status
Year of assessment (most recent) Threat (pressure) Condition (state) Action (response)
2001 medium not assessed not assessed
For more information about IBA monitoring, please click here

Site description (baseline)
This site lies on the Mahafaly karst plateau, 180 km south-west of Betioky-South and 75 km south of Toliara. It consists of a lake and a bushland area on a sandy plain, 20 km long and 3 km wide on average, c.7 km inland of the Mozambique Channel, and a large area of stunted spiny forest on the calcareous plateau inland. Lake Tsimanampetsotse is shallow and has a milky colour, being the only soda-saturated lake in Madagascar. A cliff, c.100 m high, rises 1–2 km from the eastern bank of the lake. Swallow-holes on the plateau hold small lakes, from which small freshwater streams issue after rainfall. Near Lake Tsimanampetsotse, in some areas, the water is more brackish. Torrents of less brackish water flow through underground caves. Trees between the lake and the cliff can be up to 12 m high, but the vegetation of the western part of the site, between the lake and the sea, is lower, being covered in xerophilous bushland (up to 2.2 m high), and characterized by species of Cassia, Ficus, Pluchea, Erythroxylum, Cedrelopsis, Delonix, Acacia, Albizia, Maytenus, Euphorbia and Berchemia. Some Casuarina have been planted on the eastern bank of the lake.

Key biodiversity
See Box and Tables 2 and 3 for key species. Eighty-eight species are known from this site, of which 35 are endemic to Madagascar. Tsimanampetsotse and Baly Bay are the only protected areas that hold Charadrius thoracicus. Anas bernieri has been recorded once at the lake.

Non-bird biodiversity: Lemurs: Lemur catta (VU), Propithecus verreauxi verreauxi (VU), Carnivore: Galidictis grandidieri (EN; only found in this reserve). Reptiles: Pyxis arachnoides (VU), Geochelone radiata (VU). Fish: Typhleotris madagascariensis (VU; a blind fish of underground caves).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2023) Important Bird Area factsheet: Tsimanampetsotsa National Park. Downloaded from on 09/06/2023.