Abdelwahab Chedad, Abdelhakim Bouzid, Djamel Bendjoudi, Omar Guezoul

Avifauna of M’Zab region (Ghardaïa, Algerian Sahara): checklist and overview of the current status

Abstract Despite the lack and irregularity of rainfall, high temperatures, and limited food resources, desert areas, with their oases and wetlands, are considered to be an essential stopover for birds and an important place for their wintering and breeding. In this study, we made a list of all the birds recorded in the M’Zab region at Ghardaïa (Algerian Sahara) from 2015 to 2022 using the point count method. We found 203 species (69 of which were waterbirds), belonging to 23 orders and 48 families. The most abundantly represented were Passeriformes, with 18 families and 91 species (44.83%). 84.24% of the species occurred in wetlands, followed by pre-urban areas (40.39%), palm groves and agricultural crops (39.90%). As for the phenological status of the recorded birds, 51 are breeding species, of which 38 are sedentary, 10 are migratory, and three are occasionally nesting waterbirds. There are 122 non-breeding species, of which 81 are passage visitors and 41 are wintering species. Status of the remaining 30 species is uncertain.

Doi https://doi.org/10.35513/21658005.2023.1.4

Keywords Algerian Sahara; M’Zab; phenology; avifauna; biodiversity

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