Mangroves of Menabe

Along the coast of the Menabe Antimena Protected Area stretches one of the largest remaining mangrove areas in Madagascar.

Where we work

Mangroves in the APMA

The Menabe Antimena Protected Area (APMA-Aire Protégée Menabe Antimena) includes deciduous dry forests as well as several wetlands that further emphasize the ecological diversity of the region. Among them are two lakes, Lac Bedo and Lac Kimanaomby, as well as one of the largest remaining mangrove areas in Madagascar with an extension of 10-15,000 hectares and enormous importance for the local flora and fauna.

As a breeding ground for many marine species, mangroves contribute to preserving natural fish and crustacean populations and thus provide an essential food source for humans.

Since 2019, we have been supporting mangrove conservation through scientific research and education for sustainable development.

Map of the mangroves in Menabe

The dark areas along the coast show the extent of the mangroves. The dotted black line shows the boundary of the Menabe Antimena Protect Area.

About the mangroves

Animals & Plants

APMA’s mangroves provide an important refuge for thousands of birds and other organisms that depend on wetlands. The mangroves in the Tsiribihina River catchment area are therefore also recognised as an Important Bird Area and a Ramsar Site. 82 bird species are counted in the IBA “Wetlands of the Tsiribihina and upper Tsiribihina river”, among them some endemics like the Madagascar plover (Charadrius thoracicus), the Madagascar teal (Anas bernieri), the Madagascar sacred ibis (Threskiornis bernieri) or the Madasgascar heron (Ardea humloti). Eight different mangrove species are described for the mangrove forests of APMA. Some nocturnal lemur species, such as the grey mouse lemur, also inhabit the mangroves and forage in the leaf thickets at night.


Last stronghold

Madagascar teal

The lakes and mangrove areas of the Menabe-Antimena Nature Reserve are among the last refuges of the Madagascar teal (Anas bernieri). It is found only in Madagascar. Their population is estimated at only 1000-2000 individuals.

Highly endangered

Madagascar sacred ibis

The Madagascar sacred ibis, threatened by extinction, is a coast-inhabitant, that occurs only on Madagascar. It depends on intact mangroves. Further studies are needed to better understand its occurrence in Menabe’s mangroves.


Paradise for birds

In addition to endangered endemic species, numerous other waterbird species, such as Lesser Flamingos or African Spoonbills, also live in the numerous lagoons.

Still intact


The mangrove forests of the APMA are largely intact, and there are still good populations of the eight mangrove species found there. Adequate protection is, therefore, very important.

Laid table


The extensive tidal flats are important food sources for many bird species foraging for worms, snails, mussels and crabs.

About the mangroves

People & Nature

There are several fishing villages and communities in the mangroves of the reserve. The inhabitants live mainly from fishing. During the dry season, people move from remote areas to temporary settlements in the mangroves. The mangroves and wetlands are of enormous importance to humans and fulfill a whole range of important ecosystem services, especially for the local population. Mangroves protect against coastal erosion and extreme weather events and contribute to global climate protection through their ability to sequester enormous amounts of carbon dioxide.

Environmental education

Knowledge protects mangroves

It is essential to create an understanding of the importance of the mangroves and the ecological interrelationships among the local fishing communities to work with them to ensure effective protection and sustainable use of the mangroves.


Energy efficient stoves

Like everywhere else in the world, the mangroves here are also massively cleared for firewood production. Here, alternatives, such as energy-efficient stoves for cooking, need to be developed for local people.


From shrimp farm to bird paradise

Part of the area consists of former shrimp farms that are no longer in operation and are increasingly being reclaimed by waterfowl and shorebirds. These provide good bird watching opportunities and could provide income from ecotourism in the future.


CfN in Kirindy and Menabe Antimena

“Little Rangers” &

Environmental education

Little Rangers is an environmental education camp for children and youth in the Kirindy Forest.

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Species conservation & research


Forschung zur Ökologie und Verbreitung von Arten ist Grundlage für Naturschutzmaßnahmen.

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Forest protection

& Restoration

We support the management of the Kirindy Forest and the restoration of the forest for the future.

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