Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB) of the UNESCO

The Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme is an Intergovernmental Scientific Programme aiming to set a scientific basis for the improvement of the relationships between people and their environment globally.


Launched in the early 1970s, the MAB Programme proposes an interdisciplinary research agenda and encourages capacity building that target the ecological, social and economic dimensions of biodiversity loss and the reduction of this loss.

 For implementation of its interdisciplinary work on-ground, MAB relies on the World Network of Biosphere Reserves, and on thematic networks and regional partnerships for knowledge-sharing, research and monitoring, education and training, and participatory decision-making.

  Biosphere Reserves in Algeria :

Taza Biosphere Reserve: 

The Taza National Park was created in 1984. It covers an area of 3807 hectares. The region lies on about 9kms of the Mediterranean coast. It is characterized by spectacular cliffs, beaches, mountains and valleys. Taza Biosphere Reserve was designated as such in 2004. It is well-known for hosting the Barbary ape (Macaca sylvanus), an endangered species of monkey and the only macaque primate in North Africa. It represents the unique classified area with pure and mixed oak woods from Algerian oak (Mirbeck’s oak) Quercus Canariensis, Quercus Afares, and cork oak (Quercus Suber). The site is rich in wildlife including the Barbary macaque, the Kabyle nuthatch, the red fox, raptors and water birds.

Gouraya Biosphere Reserve:


The National Park of Gouraya lies on about 10.6 kms of the Mediterranean coast in the Kabylie region. It is situated in the north-west of the city of Béjaïa and covers an area of 2080 hectares. It is characterized by typical landscapes on coastal areas as well as inland. It is also characterized by a wide variety of ecosystems making it an ideal destination for ecotourism. It presentsa vegetation mainly of rocks and cliffs and encloses the most picturesque and the unique resort of the tree spurge (Euphorbia dendroides) which is an endangered species. The National Park of Gouraya was designated as a biosphere reserve in 2004.

Chréa Biosphere Reserve:

The National Park of Chréa was created in 1983. It was designated as a biosphere reserve in 2002. It covers an area of 26000 hectares. It is situated nearly 50kms south-west of the capital Algiers, in the heart of the Blidean Atlas. The reserve is composed of mountain ranges, forests, rivers and lakes. The highest point reaches 1629 m with the Mount of Koudiat Sidi Abdelkader. The park has more than 1200 plant speciessome of which are of universal interest: the Atlas cedar and 17 of orchid species. The Chréa biosphere reserve hosts more than 100 bird’s species and some twenty of mammal species.

Djurdjura Biosphere Reserve:

The National Park ofDjurdjura lies in the northern part ofAlgeria for nearly 40 kms as the crow flies over the sea andis located at 150 kms to the east of Algiers. It covers an area of 18850 hectares. Because of the importance of its biodiversity, The National Park of Djurdjura was designated as a biosphere reserve in 1997.The vegetation of the park is Mediterranean. It is composed mainly of Atlas cedar, Holm Oak and Holly Oak (Quercus ilex) which are mixed depending on the altitude. The National Park ofDjurdjura hosts more than twenty of mammals amongst them we find: the Barbary Macaque, the striped hyena, the mongoose, the golden jackal, the serval, the common genet, the porcupine, the least weasel. The avifauna counts species of ecological importance likethe Golden Eagle, the Griffon Vulture, the Bearded Vulture, the Bonelli's Eagle, the Common Kestre, the Long-legged Buzzard, the Tawny Owl or Brown Owl and the Eurasian Eagle-Owl.

El Kala Biosphere Reserve:

The National Park ofEl Kala was created on 23rd July 1983. It is the largest national park in the north of Algeria. It includes a mosaic of ecosystems, mainly evergreen sclerophyllous forests, lakes, mountains, woodlands or scrubs, coastal and marine ecosystems. It covers an area of 76438 hectares. It constitutes oneof the last refuges of the Barbary deer. The avifauna is remarkable thanks to a complex of wetlands of international reputation including 5 in the Ramsar list on the Convention on Wetlands; A marine fringe which is rich with coral and fish. The National Park ofEl Kala was classified as a biosphere reserve in 1990.

TASSILI N'AJJER Biosphere Reserve:


The National Park of TASSILI N'AJJER was created in 1972. The park offers cultural as well as natural benefits. Its famous rock paintings and engravings of prehistoric times led it to be on the list of the World Heritage properties of the UNESCO and to be classified as the firstSaharanBiosphere Reserve in 1986. It covers an area of 80000 km2 in the center of the Sahara.The flora of Tassili is part of the botanical region called ‘Arabic-Saharan’ with a high level of endemism of nearly 50% which is essentially represented by: the Saharan Cypress or tarout (Cupressus dupreziana) and wild olive or Laperinne's olive tree. Tassili is characterized by a fauna represented by big mammals like: The Barbary sheep (Ammotragus lervia) endemic to the Saharan mountain ranges, and the Dorcas gazelle which is also known as the Ariel gazelle and is an endangered speciesat the large Wadis level, the cheetah which is also endangered. Thesmall mammals are represented by The Mzab gund, the addax, the fennec fox or fennec, the sand cat, African spiny tail, the fox. Concerning lakes, the fauna is represented by barbels, catfishes. The avifauna is represented by the Golden Eagle, the long-legged Buzzard and the owl.

The National Committee

Since November 2013, Algeria is  part of the international Coordinating  Committee  of  The MAB program. Ms Malika Dahmani, Professor of Ecology at the USTHB represents Algeria in this committee.

A new Committee Man and Biosphere UNESCO of Algeria has been installed in the  Algerian National  Commission for UNESCO. This committee is established  to  implement  the programme of Man and biosphere and aims to coordinate activities  at national level and  enliven network activities  of biosphere reserves and integrate it  into  policies and activities  for conservation and  biodiversity management , land and research.

MAB Committee is chaired by Ms. Houria Khelifi, teacher researcher at ENSA. Its members are composed of researchers and representatives of Algerian Biosphere  Reserves.

 Address  of Algeria  MAB Committee

MAB Algeria

 Palais Mustapha Pacha

 06, Avenue de l’Indépendance, Alger.

Tél : 00213 21 66 86 24
Fax : 00213 21 66 82 83
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