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Location Mongolia, Bayan-Olgii
Central coordinates 90o 6.00' East  48o 32.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4i
Area 24,400 ha
Altitude 2,079 - 2,594m
Year of IBA assessment 2009

Site description Tolbo Lake is a freshwater lake located in Tolbo soum, Bayan-Olgii aimag. The west side of the lake has numerous inlets and peninsulas. Reed and tall grassy areas have become degraded by overgrazing. The lake is frozen from October to May. A warmer climate and many years of drought have resulted in a decrease in the water level. Illegal hunting threatens wildlife species in adjacent mountains. Uncontrolled fishing in winter is contributing to water pollution.

Key Biodiversity The site is important for two Globally Threatened species: Pallas’s Fish-eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus (VU); and Saker Falcon Falco cherrug (EN). The site supports assemblages of species restricted to the Eurasian steppe and desert and Eurasian high montane biomes. The site also supports at least 1% of the flyway populations of the following congregatory waterbird species: Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo; Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus; Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus; Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea; Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula; and Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus.

Non-bird biodiversity: Grey Wolf Canis lupus, Red Fox Vulpes vulpes and Pallas's Cat Felis manul all occur at the site.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Bar-headed Goose Anser indicus 2009  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus breeding  2009  present  A3, A4i  Least Concern 
Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea 2009  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Common Goldeneye Bucephala clangula 2009  present  A3, A4i  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo 2009  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Saker Falcon Falco cherrug 2009  present  A1  Endangered 
Pallas's Fish-eagle Haliaeetus leucoryphus 2009  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus 2009  present  A4i  Near Threatened 


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

Protection status Unprotected

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Tolbo Lake. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016

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