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Location Mongolia, Dornod
Central coordinates 115o 15.00' East  49o 43.00' North
IBA criteria A1, A3, A4i
Area 65,000 ha
Altitude 610 - 821m
Year of IBA assessment 2009

Site description Mongol Daguur is a flat plain with rolling hills lying in the Ulz River basin. It is an area of moist Daurian steppe (distinct from the rest of the Eastern Mongolian Steppe), with lakes and ponds of different sizes, rivers, streams and wetland areas including reed beds. The largest lakes at the site are Khaitsiin Tsagaan (7.6 km²), Mongol Tsagaan (7.2 km²), Galuut (6.5 km²), Doroo (6.5 km²), Tari and Khokh. Most of these lakes are fed by rainwater, although some are fed by rivers and streams; their size and water levels vary depending upon rainfall. The main land use at the site is animal husbandry. In addition, a small amount of land is cultivated, with a more extensive area of cultivation now abandoned. The density of human settlement is low but it is higher near lakes and river valleys. The greatest threat to biodiversity at the site is steppe fires, which mainly originate from Russia. Steppe fires occur every year and cover very large areas. In 2000, the whole Mongol Daguur area was burnt by a fire started from Russia. The impact of livestock grazing and disturbance is increasing at important nesting areas due to a lack of management. There has also been recent mineral exploration, targeting gold. Over the last three years, the Ulz River has ceased to flow in several places, and, as a result, some small lakes have dried up. The water levels of many lakes at the site have fallen, presumably because of a warming climate. There were previously several large crop fields where cranes used to gather in large numbers but now most of these are abandoned. Illegal hunting of animals, especially Mongolian Gazelle Procapra gutturosa, is a problem throughout the year. A large proportion of the IBA is included within Mongol Daguur Ramsar Site, nominated in 1997.

Key Biodiversity Mongol Daguur is the only site in Mongolia where six species of crane can be observed together at same time. Mongol Daguur holds a signifi cant proportion of the global breeding population of White-naped Crane Grus vipio (VU) and Swan Goose Anser cygnoides (EN). Other Globally Threatened species occurring at the site are Siberian Crane Grus leucogeranus (CR), Hooded Crane G. monacha (VU), Red-crowned Crane G. japonensis (EN), Great Bustard Otis tarda (VU), Relict Gull Larus relictus (VU) and Marsh Grassbird Locustella pryeri (VU) The site also supports an assemblage of species restricted to the Eurasian steppe and desert biome. The larger lakes support tens of thousands of moulting waterbirds in summer. Congregatory waterbirds occurring at the site in numbers exceeding 1% of their flyway populations include Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus, Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo, Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus, Bean Goose Anser fabalis, Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea, White-naped Crane Grus vipio, Common Crane G. grus, Hooded Crane G. monacha, Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo and Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus. Hundreds of Demoiselle Crane and White-naped Crane can be seen in many locations in Mongol Daguur. Because of the large number of cranes occurring there, the site was designated as an Important Crane Site in North-East Asia.

Non-bird biodiversity: Daurian Hedgehog Mesechinus dauuricus, which is a species listed in the Red Data Book of Mongolia, is very common at the site. In addition, Mongolian Gazelle Procapra gutturosa is found everywhere and can form herds of hundreds or thousands of animals. Siberian Marmot Marmota sibirica (EN), Red Fox Vulpes vulpes, Corsac Fox V. corsac and Grey Wolf Canis lupus also occur.

Populations of IBA trigger species

Species Season Period Population estimate Quality of estimate IBA Criteria IUCN Category
Swan Goose Anser cygnoid breeding  2004  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Bean Goose Anser fabalis 2004  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Whooper Swan Cygnus cygnus breeding  2004  present  A3, A4i  Least Concern 
Ruddy Shelduck Tadorna ferruginea 2004  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Crested Grebe Podiceps cristatus 2004  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Cormorant Phalacrocorax carbo 2004  present  A4i  Least Concern 
Great Bustard Otis tarda breeding  2004  present  A1, A3  Vulnerable 
Siberian Crane Leucogeranus leucogeranus passage  2004  present  A1, A3  Critically Endangered 
Red-crowned Crane Grus japonensis breeding  2004  present  A1, A3  Endangered 
White-naped Crane Antigone vipio breeding  2004  present  A1, A3, A4i  Vulnerable 
Demoiselle Crane Anthropoides virgo breeding  2004  present  A3, A4i  Least Concern 
Common Crane Grus grus breeding  2004  present  A3, A4i  Least Concern 
Hooded Crane Grus monacha breeding  2004  present  A1, A3, A4i  Vulnerable 
Northern Lapwing Vanellus vanellus 2004  present  A4i  Near Threatened 
Relict Gull Larus relictus breeding  2004  present  A1  Vulnerable 
Marsh Grassbird Locustella pryeri breeding  2004  present  A1, A3  Near Threatened 

Protected areas

Protected area Designation Area (ha) Relationship with IBA Overlap with IBA (ha)  
Mongol Daguur Strict Protected Area 103,016 unknown 0  
Mongol Daguur (Mongolian Dauria) Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar) 210,000 protected area contains site 65,000  


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

Protection status Partially protected by Mongol Daguur Strictly Protected Area (Parts A and B)

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Recommended citation  BirdLife International (2016) Important Bird and Biodiversity Area factsheet: Mongol Daguur. Downloaded from on 23/10/2016

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