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Flamingo Bird Watching in Mauritania Banc d'Arguin National Park

North Africa's Mauritania Banc d'Arguin National Park includes one of the top places to visit in Africa for flamingo bird watching.

Banc d'Arguin National Park includes one of the top places to visit in Africa for flamingo bird watching.

Banc d'Arguin National Park is a protected area located on the Atlantic coast of Mauritania in West Africa. It was established in 1976 to protect the unique ecosystems of the region, which include extensive sand dunes, coastal beaches, and shallow waters that support a diverse array of marine life.  

The park covers an area of approximately 12,000 square kilometers, 1.2 million hectare or 3 million acre and includes a variety of habitats, including seagrass beds, coral reefs, and sandy and rocky shores. 

It is home to a wide variety of marine and bird species, including flamingos, pelicans, and terns. The park is also an important breeding ground for several species of migratory birds, including sandpipers, plovers, and terns. 

During the winter months, large numbers of waterfowl and shorebirds can be found in the park's wetlands and estuaries.One of the most popular bird species at the Banc d'Arguin National Park is the flamingo. 

Specifically, the park is home to both greater flamingos and lesser flamingos, which are both known for their distinctive pink coloration and long, thin legs. 

 Flamingos are a popular attraction at the park because of their striking appearance and their unique behavior. They are often seen wading in shallow water or feeding on algae and small crustaceans, and their large flocks can be quite impressive to witness.

 In addition to its ecological significance, Banc d'Arguin National Park is also an important cultural site. 

It is home to several historic settlements, including the former trading post of Arguin, which was established by the Portuguese in the 15th century. 

 The park is managed by the Mauritanian government in partnership with several international conservation organizations. 

Banc d'Arguin National Park is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it is considered one of the most important and unique protected areas in Africa

Endangered green sea turtle of North Africa's Mauritania
North African Green Sea Turtle

The Banc d'Arguin African national park is a vast area of islands, marshes and coastline for African green sea turtles. 

Mauritania's population is concentrated in the cities of Nouakchott and Nouadhibou and along the Senegal River in the southern part of the large mostly desert terrain of the country. 

Banc d'Arguin is located on the Atlantic desert coast of Mauritania, midway between the main cities of Nouakchott in the south and Nouadhibou in the north.

Banc d'Arguin is a vast area of islands, marshes and coastline.

Banc d'Arguin is one of the most important zones in the world for nesting and overwintering birds. 

Between the months of August and December, birds from Africa, northern Europe, Siberia and Greenland nest in the park. 

Also, the endangered green sea turtle migrates long distances to nest on the shores of Banc d'Arguin Mauritania

Imraguen people maintain their traditional cultural heritage, based exclusively on catching fish using traditional methods.
Mauritania Africa Native Imraguen People

The very small population of Native Imraguen or “the ones who gather life” people mostly live in seven villages within the parks area

The Imraguen people are a traditionally nomadic ethnic group that inhabits the coastal region of Mauritania in West Africa, specifically the Banc d'Arguin National Park area.

 They are known for their deep connection to the sea and their skills in fishing. The Imraguen people are believed to have originated from the Berber people who migrated to the coastal region of Mauritania. 

They have their own unique language, which is called Imraguen, although many also speak Arabic. Traditionally, the Imraguen people lived a nomadic lifestyle, moving with the seasons in search of fish. 

They were skilled fishermen and used a variety of techniques to catch fish, including netting, spearing, and trapping. They also traded fish with other groups in the region. 

 Today, many Imraguen people have settled in permanent villages and have adopted more sedentary lifestyles. 

However, fishing remains an important part of their culture and economy, and many still use traditional fishing methods. 

The Imraguen people have faced challenges in recent years, including overfishing in the region, which has depleted fish stocks and made it more difficult for them to make a living. 

Additionally, climate change has affected the coastal environment, causing sea levels to rise and making it more difficult for the Imraguen people to access certain fishing areas. 

 Despite these challenges, the Imraguen people have maintained their unique culture and traditions, and continue to be an important part of the cultural landscape of Mauritania.

Imraguen people maintain their traditional cultural heritage, based exclusively on catching fish using traditional methods.

Fishing techniques are unchanged for the Imraguen including the unique of working with dolphins to catch fish. 

Dolphins and the Imraguen people work together to catch groups of fish similar to the fishermen in Laguna, Brazil where dolphins herd fish towards the fishermen standing near the shore ready with nets to pull in the haul.

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