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Benfontein Pan (28492449)

Free State

Authority Northern Cape Department of Tourism, Environment and Conservation
Management status PRIVATE LAND
Conservation status PARTLY PROTECTED
Ramsar information
Heritage information 108 - BENFONTEIN
View Cards No


An open, ephemeral pan, with little vegetation. Counts indicate that it sometimes has much foraging habitat for shorebirds; when inundated it is capable of supporting a large bird population. Four counts are available, from summer 1996 to winter 1997. After summer 1996 the counts produced almost no birds and conditions were obviously very dry. The summer 1996 count produced good numbers of Palearctic waders such as Greenshank, Curlew Sandpiper and Little Stint, and smaller numbers of other shorebirds; the commonest waterbirds were Egyptian Goose and Redknobbed Coot. A possible mild threat is a dam wall built through the centre of the pan, possibly to allow water to accumulate in a smaller area; its effect on the pan's ecology is unknown.

SppCommon nameTaxonomic nameMinAvgMaxIBASubregional
256Calidris pugnax1233.5055  
269Avocet, PiedRecurvirostra avosetta217.3344   
212Coot, Red-knobbedFulica cristata5161.0071   
10014Duck, UnidentifiedN/A N/A1010.0010
100Duck, White-faced WhistlingDendrocygna viduata12.504   
96Duck, Yellow-billedAnas undulata25.0013   
59Egret, LittleEgretta garzetta22.002   
61Egret, Western CattleBubulcus ibis26.0013   
86Flamingo, Greater Phoenicopterus roseus11.001   
89Goose, EgyptianAlopochen aegyptiaca25.8017   
88Goose, Spur-wingedPlectropterus gambensis14.2012   
5Grebe, Black-neckedPodiceps nigricollis55.005   
6Grebe, LittleTachybaptus ruficollis11.001   
263Greenshank, CommonTringa nebularia130.6789   
167Harrier, African MarshCircus ranivorus11.001
69Heron, Black-crowned NightNycticorax nycticorax11.001   
55Heron, Black-headedArdea melanocephala22.002   
54Heron, GreyArdea cinerea11.001   
57Heron, PurpleArdea purpurea11.001   
81Ibis, African SacredThreskiornis aethiopicus44.004   
83Ibis, GlossyPlegadis falcinellus931.0053   
397Kingfisher, MalachiteCorythornis cristatus11.001
245Lapwing, BlacksmithVanellus armatus19.9127   
509Martin, Brown-throatedRiparia paludicola11.001
210Moorhen, CommonGallinula chloropus11.672   
361Owl, MarshAsio capensis22.002
237Plover, Kittlitz'sCharadrius pecuarius99.5010   
238Plover, Three-bandedCharadrius tricollaris210.2535   
102Pochard, SouthernNetta erythrophthalma1818.0018   
251Sandpiper, CurlewCalidris ferruginea164164.00164  
262Sandpiper, MarshTringa stagnatilis11.001   
264Sandpiper, WoodTringa glareola12.004   
90Shelduck, South AfricanTadorna cana214.2549   
94Shoveler, CapeSpatula smithii213.8039   
250Snipe, AfricanGallinago nigripennis12.333   
85Spoonbill, AfricanPlatalea alba11.001   
270Stilt, Black-wingedHimantopus himantopus777.25216   
253Stint, LittleCalidris minuta636636.00636   
99Teal, Blue-billedSpatula hottentota710.5014   
98Teal, CapeAnas capensis28.0018   
97Teal, Red-billedAnas erythrorhyncha58.3312   
304Tern, White-wingedChlidonias leucopterus8080.0080   
10008Wader, UnidentifiedN/A N/A33.003
686Wagtail, CapeMotacilla capensis211.7136
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Thursday 25 July 2024 08:17
FitzPatrick Institute of African Ornithology
Department of Biological Sciences - University of Cape Town

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