Third International Scientific and Practical Conference “Eagles of the Palearctic: Study and Conservation”

Raptors Conservation. Suppl. 2. Proceedings of Conferences

Migratory raptors in Imam Turki Bin Abdullah royal nature reserve: a biodiversity hotspot in Saudi Arabia

Kabeer B., Shahadah Y.K., Raseni R.M. (Imam Turki Bin Abdullah Royal Nature Reserve Development Authority, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia)

Bilal Kabeer
Yehya K. Shahadah
Rayan M. Raseni
Recommended citation: Kabeer B., Shahadah Y.K., Raseni R.M. Migratory Raptors in Imam Turki Bin Abdullah Royal Nature Reserve: a Biodiversity Hotspot in Saudi Arabia. – Raptors Conservation. 2023. S2: 163–164. DOI: 10.19074/1814-8654-2023-2-163-164 URL:

Saudi Arabia, encompassing 1,969,000 km2 Saudi Arabia, encompassing 1,969,000 km2, is a home to rich array of bird species across its diverse ecosystems. The Imam Turki bin Abdullah Royal Reserve (ITBA), situated in the northern part of the kingdom, holds a varied topography and habitat diversity that makes it a haven for migratory birds. This ecological richness attracts a diversity of diurnal raptor species, which utilize the reserve for stopovers during migration and as breeding grounds. ITBA's strategic location places it along global migratory routes, making it essential stopover for migratory falcons and various other bird of prey species. This underlines the reserve's critical role in international avian conservation efforts. A rapid assessment survey of the reserve's core area, known as Al-Taysia, has resulted in the documentation of 54 confirmed bird species, with an anticipated total of 198 species. These findings are derived from the initial ecological survey, providing invaluable insights into the reserve's avifauna. Birds of prey are a prominent feature of ITBA's avian diversity. These amazing hunters include eagles, hawks, and falcons. The reserve's abundant prey base and suitable breeding territories make it an attractive destination for these magnificent birds.

The survey revealed several raptor species, including the globally threatened Steppe Eagle (Aquila nipalensis) and the Saker Falcon (Falco cherrug) and other raptor species. In conclusion, the ITBA reserve in Saudi Arabia serves as a crucial hub for migratory diurnal raptors and a diverse range of other avian species, offering them a safe place during migration and breeding. The base line study highlights the significance of ITBA in the conservation of bird species, particularly raptors, it calls for immediate action to safeguard this unique habitat, ensuring the continued survival of its migratory and resident avian species.