The IBA is centred on Bolaven South-west and Xe Khampho proposed national protected areas, in southern Lao P.D.R., and also includes parts of Xe Pian and Dong Hua Sao National Protected Areas. The IBA contains the middle stretches and large parts of the catchments of the Xe Pian and Xe Khampho, which flow south from the Bolaven plateau, to Xe Pian National Protected Area. The landscape of the IBA comprises lowlands and rolling hills, generally below 700 m asl, which support semi-evergreen forest (Thewlis et al. 1996, Duckworth et al. 1998). There is a high density of non-flowing wetlands within the IBA, many of which are permanent. The IBA is of high importance for the conservation of White-winged Duck Cairina scutulata, as it supports one of only three known significant populations in the country (Thewlis et al. 1998). The riverine habitats within the IBA are also important for Masked Finfoot Heliopais personata and Lesser Fish Eagle Ichthyophaga humilis. The non-flowing wetlands within the IBA may also be important for a number of large waterbird species. However, they have been the focus of little ornithological survey to date, particularly those within Xe Khampho proposed national protected area. Finally, the semi-evergreen forest at the IBA, which is the largest area of such forest in Lao P.D.R. and as large as any in Indochina or Thailand, supports a relatively intact bird community, and is important for Siamese Fireback Lophura diardi, Red-collared Woodpecker Picus rabieri and Great Hornbill Buceros bicornis (R. J. Timmins in litt. 2002).
The IBA is one of few sites that suports population of White-winged Duck more than four birds. The IBA also is one of the most important site for Grey-faced Tit Babbler as it supports a great number of the birds
Non-bird biodiversity: (WCS 1995) found some signs (incl. scratch marks on trees, torn open trunks and droppings) of either Sun Bear U. malayanus or Asiatic Black Bear U. thibetanus.WCS (1995) recorded three species of primate: Long-tailed Macaque Macaca fascicularis, Silvered Langur Semnopithecus cristatus and a gibbon species Hylobates species.CS found remains of one species of turtle in local villages: Impressed Tortoise Manouria impressa.WCS recorded tracks and dung several months old of one species of elephant: Asian Elphant Elephas maximus.
BirdLife International (2018) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Xe Khampho / Xe Pian. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 21/06/2018.