The protected area network of Africa has grown from nothing to over 2 million km2 in the past 110 years. This network covers parts of all biomes and priority areas for biodiversity conservation but protected area gaps remain, as identified at the 5th World Parks Congress in 2003. Forest reserves, managed by Forest Departments, are typically excluded from global protected area lists, but in Africa they are found in 23 countries and cover at least 549,788 km2, adding 25% to the conservation estate. Forest reserves protect 5.3% (2,027 km2) of the dry forest habitats, 5% (165,285 km2) of lowland and montane moist forests, 2.6% (364,354 km2) of savannah woodlands, 1.8% (10,561 km2) of flooded grasslands, and 1.65% (1,177 km2) of mangroves. Forest reserves also protect parts of three conservation schemes: 6.5% (61,630 km2) of BirdLife's Endemic Bird Areas, 3.4% (147,718 km2) of Conservation International's Hotpots and 3.4% (346,864 km2) of WWF's Global 200 Ecoregions. Several of the global protected area gaps identified in Africa are also covered by forest reserves, in the Eastern Arc Mountains, Eastern African coastal forests, Kenyan Highlands, Cameroon-Nigerian Mountains, West African Forests and mountain areas of Malawi, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Zambia. Some African forest reserves have a legally defined role in biodiversity conservation and are strictly protected; they thus fit criteria for protected areas. Working with forest departments in individual countries may help develop a more comprehensive protected area network without creating additional new reserves.