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Location China (mainland), Xinjiang
Central coordinates 83o 5.00' East  41o 0.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A2, A3, A4i
Area 280,000 ha
Altitude 940 - 1,000m
Year of IBA assessment 2009

Site description Located between Aksu and Korla cities, 80 km south of Kuqa, 250 km east of Aksu and 500 km south-west of Urumqi. The IBA is surrounded by high mountains which range from 4,000-8,000 m. The Tarim River is the longest inland river in China, but human activities have already depleted the water resources in its lower course, including at Lop Nur which was once the largest lake in Xinjiang.

Key Biodiversity 

Non-bird biodiversity: There were records of Panthera tigris before the 1950s, but it is now locally extinct. Other animals include Vulpes vulpes, Camelus bactrianus, Cervus elaphus and Gazella subgutturosa. The area also support the fish Pelochelys bibroni, but it is almost extinct there.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Black-necked Grebe Podiceps nigricollis unknown  2008  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Black Stork Ciconia nigra unknown  1989  110 individuals  unknown  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo passage  2008  10,000 individuals  unknown  A4i  Least Concern 
Pallas's Fish-eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus unknown  2008  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Black-headed Gull Larus ridibundus unknown  2008  present  A4i  Least Concern 


IUCN habitat Habitat detail Extent (% of site)
Desert   -
Shrubland   -
Wetlands (inland)   -

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Xayar forest and wetland. Downloaded from on 26/10/2016

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife