Working for birds in Africa

Important Bird Areas

Thu, 01/10/2013 - 22:07 -- abc_admin

Fenais da Luz, São Miguel, Azores

Image Credit: 
Augusto Faustino

The Azores archipelago is treated as a secondary Endemic Bird Area (EBA) by BirdLife International on account of one restricted-range species, Island Canary Serinus canaria, which also occurs on Madeira and the Canary Islands. Some 30-40% of the total world population are found in the Azores where the species occurs virtually everywhere from open to forested habitats.

The Azores are very important for breeding seabirds in particular Cory's Shearwater Calonectris diomedea with nearly half the world population and Roseate Tern Sterna dougallii with three-quarters of the European population.

The Azores Bullfinch Pyrrhula (pyrrhula) murina which is a distinct form of the widespread Eurasian Bullfinch Pyrrhula pyrrhula is endemic to eastern São Miguel. Azores Bullfinch is treated as a full species Pyrrhula murina by some authorities.

BirdLife International has identified the following 15 Important Bird Areas all of which hold important colonies of breeding seabirds. As well as Cory’s Shearwater Calonectris diomedea and Roseate Tern Sterna dougallii mentioned above, there are important colonies of Little Shearwater Puffinus assimilis, Madeiran Storm-petrel Oceanodroma castro and Common Tern Sterna hirundo.


Coast and islets of Graciosa

Coast of Corvo

*Coast of Faial

*Coast of Flores

*Coast of Pico

*East of São Miguel

North and East Coast of Santa Maria


South East Coast of Terceira


Villa Franca Islet

Villa Islet

West Coast of São Miguel

West Coast of Terceira

* also important for breeding populations of Island Canary Serinus canaria.

The habitat of most of these IBAs comprises sea cliffs and rocky shores with some broadleaf woodland and heathland.

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