22 Important Bird Areas (IBAs) with a total land area of 18,040 km2 were designated by BirdLife International. Of these, 13 are legally or partly protected on paper at least. Of the 22, 13 are in Sudan and 9 in Southern Sudan following the split into the 2 countries. There have been few ornithological surveys in recent years and much of the data on which the selections have been made is out of date and possibly inaccurate.
Wadi Haifa is the only IBA in the north situated close to the border with Egypt and adjacent to the Lake Nasser IBA in Egypt. It has Saharan-Sindian species such as Crowned Sandgrouse Pterocles coronatus and Pharaoh’s Eagle Owl Bubo ascalaphus.
3 IBAs are on the Red Sea: Mukawwar Island and Dunganab Bay; Khor Arba’at and Suakin Archipelago. The first 2 of these support Saharan-Sindian species such as Spotted Sandgrouse Pterocles senegallus and Desert Lark Ammomanes deserti. The Suakin Archipelago is a large group of islets which support breeding colonies of 5 tern species: Greater Crested Tern Sterna bergii, Lesser Crested Tern S. bengalensis, White-cheeked Tern S. repressa, Bridled Tern S. anaethetus and Brown Noddy Anous stolidus. Small numbers of Brown Booby Sula leucogaster, Sooty Gull Larus hemprichii and Crab-plover Dromas ardeola also breed.
Gezira is a large flood-plain between the Blue and White Niles south of Khartoum. It is an important site for waterbirds and large counts of Garganey Anas querquedula, Ruff Philomachus pugnax and Collared Pratincole Glareola pratincola have been observed in the past.
Um Badr Lake, Jebel Marra and En Nahud hold Sahel species such as Arabian Bustard Ardeotis arabs, Black Scrub-Robin Cercotrichas podobe and Chestnut-bellied Starling Lamprotornis pulcher.
The following IBAs are all in the southern parts of Sudan: Dinder; Lake Kundi; Lake Abiad; Radom and Ashana.
For further details, download the country IBAs from BirdLife International.