The Annotated Ramsar List: Chad


The Annotated Ramsar List of Wetlands of International Importance


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The Convention on Wetlands came into force for Chad on 13 October 1990. Chad presently has 6 sites designated as Wetlands of International Importance, with a surface area of 12,405,068 hectares.

site; date of designation; region, province, state; surface area; coordinates
site; date de désignation; région, province, état; superficie; coordonnées
sitios; fecha de designación; región, provincia, estado; área; coordenadas

Lac Fitri. 13/06/90; Batha; 195,000 ha; 12º50’N 017º30’E. Biosphere Reserve. Fed by a catchment of approximately 70,000km² this Sahelian lake plays a vital role in the local economy, especially during periods of low rainfall. It supports a productive fishery and extensive seasonal grazing. Habitat is of international importance for wintering Palearctic waterbirds and as drought refuge for Afrotropical species and elephants. Ramsar site no. 486. Most recent RIS information: ?.

Partie tchadienne du lac Tchad. 14/08/01; Lac, Kenam; 1,648,168 ha; 14°20’N 013°37’E. A vast expanse of water bordered on the northwest by a cordon of dunes, on the northeast by an "erg" of shifting sand dunes, and on the south by flat lowlands. Lake Chad is shared with Cameroon, Niger, and Nigeria, and the Chadian portion covers a great variety of wetland types, including open waters, islets and sandbanks, polders, oases and temporary and permanent "natron" or alkalai pools. The endorrheic lake, as the only expanse of water of similar magnitude in the Sahara, is of immense importance to all life in the region and fulfills most of the Ramsar Criteria. The site supports internationally important numbers of waterbirds and is essential for some 150 fish species, and is the only place in the country that supports the endemic Kouri Ox, which is threatened by extinction through interbreeding. The lake also regulates the variability of annual water supply, recharges groundwater, and helps to control flooding. Of 300,000 fisherpeople in Chad, more than half of them live around Lake Chad, and the production of spiruline ("blue algae") and natron is economically important., as is the raising of cattle, sheep, and camels, and some agriculture. Desiccation and sanding over are seen as the main threats. Ramsar site no. 1134. Most recent RIS information: 2001.

Plaine de Massenya.17/10/08; Baguirmi; 2,526,000 ha; 11°15'N 16°15'E. Located in the southwestern regions of the country, this inland wetland forms part of the Lake Chad Basin and is characterized by freshwater marshes, rivers, streams and creeks. It plays several roles such as flood control, sediment capture, groundwater renewal, etc. Various endangered species that also attract tourists are present, e.g., the African elephant, leopards, the Nile crocodile, and others. There are 386 species of birds noted in the area, as well as numerous fish species, due to the occurrence of vegetation such as Echinachloa sp among others. The most important livelihood activities in the area are fishing, agriculture and livestock keeping. The main threats are deforestation, high concentrations of livestock, bush fires, over-fishing practices, poaching and lack of personnel with technical capabilities to ensure proper management practices. In the surrounding areas the major threat is caused by exploration activities for petroleum. Development projects in the area are being carried out by NGOs, e.g., education of the local communities on sustainable management of their resources, and an inventory is being carried out on sustainable energy sources. Ramsar site no. 1839. Most recent RIS information: 2008.

Plaines d'inondation des Bahr Aouk et Salamat.01/05/06; Salamat, Bahr Koh; 4,922,000 ha; 10°45'N 020°33'E. Parc National. One of the world's largest Ramsar sites, a complex of floodplains, hills, a lake, rivers and ponds located in a natural depression at the border with the Central Africa Republic. The site plays a very important role for the surrounding wildlife, providing breeding grounds for several migratory waterbirds and supporting hippos, leopards, elephants and different antelope species. It also is a spawning and nursery ground for several fish families, and plays a role in flood control, groundwater recharge, sediment trapping and chemical regulation of the waters. Fishing is an important socio-economic activity, with annual catches amounting to 15,000 tonnes; the area is also a renowned grazing ground, and different crops are grown according to the habitat type. Local trees are used for medicinal purposes, firewood and fruit. Tourism in the Zakouma National Park and hunting concessions can potentially be further exploited. The main threats to the site arise from poaching, oil exploration, over-grazing, illegal fires and contamination by pesticides. An environmental education project is taking place in the schools, while awareness-raising and training in participatory management is being carried out with the local communities. One of the pilot projects in the framework of the GEF Lake Chad Basin project is taking place within the site. Ramsar site no. 1621. Most recent RIS information: 2006.

Plaines d'inondation du Logone et les dépressions Toupouri.14/11/05; Chari-Baguirmi, Mayo-Kebbi, Tandjilé; 2,978,900 ha; 10°30'N 016°14'E. One of Africa's largest wetlands, characterized by a succession of rivers, lakes, floodplains and permanent and temporary ponds. The different ecosystems support typical faunal and floral associations, among which are some locally threatened plant species such as the African Palmyra palm and the Néré (Parkia biglobosa). The site also hosts important Occidental Palearctic and Ethiopian migratory species such as the Black Crowned-Crane, the Spur-winged Goose and Dendrocygna species. The floodplains also play an essential role in providing spawning and nursery sites for numerous fish families, which are exploited by the locals throughout the year, using different fishing practices according to season and location. Men are responsible for fishing, while women dry and smoke the fish which is then commercialized. Animal raising, subsistence agriculture (rice, sorghum, taro), a faunal reserve in the northern part, and oil prospecting are other land-uses in the site. Deforestation, poaching, water extraction, pesticide pollution and oil extraction are some of the threats arising from within the site, while irrigation, oil mining and cement production threaten the site's integrity from outside. A management plan is envisaged under the GEF/ World Bank/ UNDP Lake Chad Basin Commission project. Ramsar site no. 1560. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

Réserve de faune de Binder-Léré.14/11/05; Mayo-Kebbi; 135,000 ha, 09°18'N 014°17'E. A variety of wetland types, including lakes, permanent and temporary streams, and swamps at the Chad-Cameroonian border. The renowned Gauthiot Waterfalls, which are venerated by the indigenous Moundang people, prevent the rich fish fauna from moving from the Niger river system to the Lake Chad basin. The site hosts a number of endangered species such as the manatee, crocodiles, hippos, and cheetahs and is a feeding ground for many waterbirds including Dendrocygna spp, Balearica pavonina, Pelecanus rufescens and Plectropterus gambensis. Fishing is a very important activity for local people, with fish sold in the surrounding towns. Agriculture, hunting and livestock raising are also carried out. In the surrounding areas, a number of activities threaten the site or have the potential to do so, including oil exploration, gold and cement mining, and a cotton factory. An environmental information and training programme is being carried out to integrate an environmental component in primary school curricula. Ramsar site no. 1561. Most recent RIS information: 2005.

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Number of » Contracting Parties: 168 Sites designated for the
» List of Wetlands of
International Importance
2,186 Total surface area of designated sites (hectares): 208,674,247

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